Owning a car will set the average motorist back more than £206,625 during their lifetime on the road, according to research.
A study of 2,000 drivers revealed just how much they can expect to spend on repairs, petrol and parking, as well as insurance and car tax.
It revealed car maintenance sets the average owner back £439 per year as they fork out for essential upkeep and repairs – adding up to £27,716 over a lifetime behind the wheel.
The biggest expense is fuel, with typically an incredible £54,341 pumped into their vehicle.
It also emerged the average adult will own five cars, worth a total of £41,976 in value, or £8,395.20 each.
A spokesman for leading online lender MYJAR, which commissioned the research, said: “Running a car is a necessity for many people in the UK, but our survey found that the costs of owning a car run far beyond the initial payment of buying one.
"Things like fuel and maintenance costs can quickly creep up.
“And many of the smaller costs of car ownership – like paying for it to be cleaned, or buying accessories – are less likely to be budgeted for by many consumers.”
The study also found the average cost of annual car insurance is £342 while another £181 per year is spent on cleaning costs.
That puts a car owner’s lifetime cleaning bill at a huge £11,460.
And even when they’re not in their motor, drivers are being hit by expenses – with the average motorist spending an incredible £20,409 on parking over the years.
Tax and insurance combined will also hit drivers for £6,943 and £21,595 respectively.
But the study also found Brits tend to buy more expensive cars as they get older – with their first costing an average of £1,717, and their most recent £6,845.
Just one in 10 motorists think they could get by easily without their car, with more than half saying their life utterly depends on it.
It’s not all outgoings though – Brits think they can expect to find a few pounds in loose change lying around in their car each year, adding up to a cool £145 over a lifetime.
To cover the staggering expenses of owning a vehicle one fifth of respondents have taken out a loan, and 46 per cent have put them on credit cards.
The most common uses for car-related use of loans and credit cards are buying a new or preowned vehicle, buying petrol or paying for unexpected repair bills.
MYJAR’s spokesman added: “Our study found that four in 10 people have questioned whether they should keep their car, due to how much it was costing them.
“But many would rather go without a lot of things before giving up their car – they’re vital for so many parts of life.
“Our advice to car owners is to try and put aside money each month especially for future car maintenance emergencies – an unexpected bill can be devastating for saving plans.”
LIFETIME CAR COST BREAKDOWN:
Fuel - £54,341.28
Buying cars - £41,976.43
Repairs - £27,716.22
Insurance - £21,595.77
Parking - £20,409.48
Cleaning - £11,460.96
Servicing - £10,380.51
Accessories - £7,922.88
Tax - £6,943.86
Breakdown cover - £3,167.64
Fines - £710.01