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Nearly half of car buyers ready for next car, despite budget squeeze

Nearly half of car buyers (47%) intend to carry on with their next car purchase, despite their budgets being squeezed, according to new research.

JudgeService’s annual State of the Nation survey polled the views of 6,524 franchised dealer customers.

Other buyers say they will factor in rising livings costs to make their next purchase more cost effective.  

One in 10 said they will consider a cheaper make or model, 9% will switch from new to used and 7% will consider smaller cars but stay with their current brand, while 3% will look at older vehicles. 

A further 7% will look at electric vehicles (EV) for potential fuel cost savings. 

However, for a quarter of buyers the impact on their domestic budgets is proving too much, prompting them to run their current cars longer.

Although just 5% say they no longer intend to change their cars. 

Neil Addley, managing director of JudgeService, said: “Our survey shows just how resilient British car buyers are with most saying they will take the rising costs on the chin or mitigate the impact by compromising on what they would typically choose.

“For dealers this means factoring in cost pressures and offering affordable finance options and payment walks for customers considering smaller cars or used cars.

“Even for those buyers who say they’ll delay their next purchase, or abandon it altogether, there’s still an opportunity for dealers to engage with them through highlighting the peace of mind benefits of extended warranties and service plans.”

Addley also believes dealers have an opportunity to retain customers prepared to look at other brands for cheaper alternatives. 

“It’s important for dealers to understand what their customers want in terms of used cars.

“Franchised dealers know the makes and models they’re selling against and this should inform what they source for their used car forecourts, otherwise those customers will buy elsewhere,” he said. 

The full JudgeService 2023 State of the Nation report will be published later this month.

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