The average life of a car was about 10-12 years in 1990, with a rather large scatter between manufacturers. The areas which corrode within a car are those relatively small areas which are badly designed with regards to corrosion. These areas could be considerable improved by better design, and greater attention to detail, and therefore would represent a minimal cost to the first and subsequent owners. Some examples of these areas are:
'Click' on any of the hot spots to find out more about the corrosion behavior of that specific area or read on 'rusty fuel tanks'
However, greater longevity could mean that the number of cars on the road could affect the sale of new vehicles. Thus corrosion protection of motor vehicles does not follow the normal free enterprise marketplace rules , as the driving force offering a better standard of corrosion protection increases the cost of the product, giving a competitive financial edge to manufacturers not bothering with durability. (reference)