Research from Roy Morgan reveals nearly 2.5 million Australians intend to purchase a new car in the next four years.
The latest survey of 50,000 consumers suggests our ‘new car purchase intention’ remains at near-record levels, following a 15-year peak in February.
“In addition to four year car buying intention being close to a record with 2.457 million, short term new car buying intention has also increased,” researchers said. “The number of Australians intending to purchase a new car in the next 12 months has now increased by 9.2 per cent over the last quarter to 679,000.”
Roy Morgan Research communications director Norman Morris cited increasing consumer confidence as the main factor behind the spike. The same reasoning could also be applied to current new car sales, which maintained record pace in August, according to official VFACTs data.
“Over the last three months, there has been considerable optimism in the new car market as shown by the steady increase in buying intentions for the next four years and strong confidence among new car buyers,” Morris said.
“Although VFACTs sales to August are only up marginally on last year, strong intention levels indicate that it is likely to be another good year for the industry.”
According to the survey, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Kia, Volkswagen and Skoda stood to gain from the market’s newfound optimism."
“The increase in new vehicle intentions over the last three months has been driven primarily from the continued market trend to SUV’s, with an increase of 84,000, coming mainly from medium SUV’s,” Morris said.
“Light commercials were the other big mover, increasing by 41,000, while passenger vehicle intentions remained unchanged.
“Not all brands shared in this rising market, with the major growth coming from Toyota up 45,000, Mitsubishi up 44,000, Kia up 35,000, VW up 22,000 and Skoda up 18,000.”
How to get people buying EVs
BMW says better range and more high-powered recharging points crucial
The trigger for the transition of electric vehicles from niche to mainstream sales appeal among new car buyers is a range of 600km to 700km and an empty-to-full recharging time 20 minutes or under.
Those are the thresholds BMW has distilled from its pool of 170,000 electrified-vehicle owners, which it claims is among the largest captive knowledge banks on the subject any auto company can tap into.
BMW Group is forecasting 20 per cent of its new vehicle sales will be either PHEV or BEV by 2025.
It has announced its intention to have 25 electrified vehicles in the market by 2025, 12 of which will be battery electric, with the latter offering ranges up to 700km.
“The beginning of the 2020s we will see another two or three updates on battery technology and cell technology, so then we will see ranges up to 600 or 700km,” said Dirk Arnold, vice-president of product management for BMW i Brand and e-mobility.
“I think that will be then definitely sufficient for all needs across your personal mobility.
“Range is the currency that customers think about.”
The flipside of range is charging time and Arnold described that as the “decisive factor” in attracting converts to EVs.
The establishment of a comprehensive recharging infrastructure was also crucial, he added, as that quelled concerns about range anxiety, a commonly held fear that discouraged people from buying EVs.
“No-one talks about gas stations because everyone knows they are all across the country and you can go from gas station to gas station,” said Arnold. “The same holds true for the charging infrastructure.”
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