Long-term new car buying intentions finished 2013 on a high note, with 2,331,000 Australians intending to buy a new car in the next four years. This result is 4.8% higher than it was in December 2012 and amounts to more than 100,000 additional motorists in the market.
In the short term, approximately 647,000 Australians intend to buy a new car in the next year, a slight increase (1%) on December 2012. Toyota remains the most considered brand amongst those intending to purchase a car in 2014, with one in every four buyers setting their sights on a Toyota model. Mazda has moved into second place (overtaking Holden), with a consideration rate of almost 17%. Of the luxury brands, the big mover has been Audi, with close to 6% of the market considering one of their models — a whopping 64% increase over the last 12 months.
New Car Buying Intention
Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia): April 2002 – December 2013, n=648,474 (avg. quarterly sample n = 13,523).
Jordan Pakes, Group Account Director – Automotive, Roy Morgan Research, says:
“New vehicle sales hit an all-time high in 2013 of 1,136,227 — an increase of 2.2% on the previous benchmark set in 2012, according to VFACTS. This growth came from the private buyer market, with 583,312 vehicles sold privately (an 8.1% increase on 2012). Apart from Heavy Commercial vehicles, all other categories were down. In fact, government new vehicle sales plummeted by more than 20%.
“This high private sales figure is not totally unexpected, with both long- and short-term new car intention metrics hitting record heights earlier in 2013. At a category level, the SUV market continues to grow — no fewer than 333,511 new SUVs left showrooms in 2013, up from 307,253 the previous year. Again, rising demand from the private market was responsible for this increase. In contrast, sales of traditional passenger cars continued to decline, falling below 50% of total new vehicle sales, thanks primarily to a decrease in business and government purchases.
“So what’s in store for the automotive market in 2014? Bearing in mind that short- and long-term intention metrics are up on the same time last year, interest rates are low and stable, and the ASX200 is comfortably above the 5,000 mark, marginal growth looks likely. Continued growth of the affluent 50+ sector (the only major age bracket in Australia that is growing) also bodes well.
However, there are also some factors working against the market. These include ever-increasing petrol prices, rising unemployment, and softening consumer and business confidence. Furthermore, the lower Aussie dollar makes it more expensive for brands to import cars and, as a result, harder for them to offer ‘cash’ equivalent incentives/deals…”
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