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What Cars Do Rich People Buy?

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- Call it Drivestyles of the Rich and Famous.

Car-shopping site recently analyzed buying patterns in the nation's costliest ZIP codes and found America's richest consumers like Jeeps, Mercedes-Benzes and Teslas more than Rolls-Royces or Lamborghinis.

"They're not buying exotic cars, they're not buying Ferraris, they're not buying the most-expensive cars available," Edmunds Senior Analyst Jessica Caldwell says. "They're buying cars that fit their needs rather than just showing off their wealth."

Caldwell, who compiled Edmunds' list by looking at all new-car registrations filed between Jan. 1 and Aug. 31, said America's ultra-rich seem to favor cars that match the areas they live in.

For instance, Californians who live in Silicon Valley's poshest enclaves like the cutting-edge Tesla (TSLA) Model S electric car. But buyers in Manhattan's ritziest neighborhoods prefer Jeep and Mercedes sport utility vehicles that Caldwell theorizes can handle New York City potholes with ease.

"Rich drivers seem to like cars that are cool but practical for the region that they live in," she says. "They don't always seem to go for the top brand, or even for the most-expensive model within a brand like Mercedes."

Click below to check out which cars drivers in America's five costliest ZIP codes have been buying the most this year.

Edmunds generated the list by looking at Polk car-registration data covering communities at the top of Forbes magazine's latest annual America's Most Expensive ZIP Codes rankings. Car prices refer to manufacturer's suggested retail prices for each vehicle's base 2014 version.
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