ATLANTA — For the January edition of the Shopper Insights Report, brought to you by the AutoTrader.com Trend Engine, the experts at AutoTrader.com named the most significant all-new or newly redesigned vehicles for 2012 and then polled more than 200 shoppers to find out what their motivations were for selecting either the current model year or the newly redesigned vehicle. Respondents were more likely to show an interest in purchasing an all-new or newly redesigned model, rather than the current model year, and the top factors for going that route were: like the look of the redesign (at 57%), want the latest features and technology (at 54%) and better gas mileage (at 47%).
“With the economic recovery continuing on a positive trajectory, automakers are aggressively introducing redesigns and brand new models, giving shoppers plenty of options when they’re looking to get behind the wheel of the latest and greatest vehicles,” said Rick Wainschel, vice president of national accounts at AutoTrader.com. “As OEMs compete for the attention of technology savvy shoppers, they will need to be vigilant about communicating these benefits through multiple mediums to reach and engage their potential buyers.”
The experts at AutoTrader.com chose 10 vehicles—five that are currently available and five that are coming in 2012—as their picks for the Most Significant All-New or Newly Redesigned Vehicles for 2012. These vehicles include many of the features that shoppers want the most. Their picks are below.
AutoTrader.com Editors’ Picks – Most Significant All-New or Newly Redesigned Vehicles for 2012
2012 BMW 3 Series
2012 Chevrolet Sonic
2012 Jeep Wrangler
2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
2012 Toyota Camry
2012 Volkswagen Passat
2013 Chevrolet Malibu
2012 Subaru BRZ
2013 Ford Escape
2012 Ford Focus Electric.
Click here to see the reasons why these vehicles were selected.
According to the December poll, the top five technology features shoppers most desire are: keyless entry and ignition (selected by 56%), built-in GPS (selected by 55%), smartphone connectivity (selected by 43%), voice control features (selected by 35%) and infotainment touchscreen (selected by 31%). However, shoppers are less inclined to pay a premium for most of these features, with the majority of respondents indicating that they would not pay extra, and approximately one quarter saying they would pay around $500 for any of the above.
Although fuel efficiency was top among shoppers’ reasons for preferring a redesigned vehicle, their interest in hybrid and electric engines fell lower on the priority list, with 26% of respondents interested in hybrid engine technology and 21% interested in electric engine technology. But, respondents did put a higher premium on these options and would be slightly more willing to delay a purchase for them rather than other features.
“Many vehicles today can achieve great gas mileage without utilizing a hybrid or electric engine, which could be lowering the level of interest in alternative engines. However, for those shoppers who are looking for benefits beyond better mpgs, a vehicle with an alternative engine may be worth the wait—and the added expense,” Wainschel continued.
The January issue of the Shopper Insights Report details AutoTrader.com’s top picks for the best all-new or newly redesigned vehicles for 2012 and dives deep into what technologies shoppers are most interested in, how much extra they’ll pay for these new features and whether they’d delay a purchase to get those features. Click here to access the full report online.
Atlanta-based AutoTrader.com, created in 1997, is the Internet’s ultimate automotive marketplace and consumer information website. AutoTrader.com aggregates in a single location millions of new cars, used cars and certified pre-owned cars from thousands of auto dealers and private sellers and is a leading online resource for auto dealers, individuals and manufacturers to advertise and market their vehicles to in-market shoppers. The company also provides a robust suite of software tools for dealers and manufacturers to help them manage and market their vehicle inventory and display advertising on the Internet. AutoTrader.com continues to grow key business metrics, including revenue, profitability and site traffic. Today, AutoTrader.com attracts millions of unique monthly visitors who utilize the site to review descriptions, photos and videos of vehicles for sale; research and compare vehicles; review pricing and specials; and read auto-related content like buying and selling tips and editorial coverage of major auto shows and automotive trends. AutoTrader.com operates one other auto marketing brand, AutoTraderClassics.com. AutoTrader.com also owns used vehicle management software company vAuto, Kelley Blue Book (Kbb.com), HomeNet Automotive, a leading provider of online inventory management and merchandising solutions for the automotive retail industry and VinSolutions, a leading provider of end-to-end solution platforms for dealers. AutoTrader.com is a majority-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises. Providence Equity Partners is a 25 percent owner of the company and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is also an investor. For more information, please visit www.autotrader.com.