Exclusive Autocar survey finds sales being delayed by worries over Brexit and diesel
16 May 2019

As news of yet another monthly fall in new car sales emerged last week, there is strong new evidence that substantial numbers of car buyers are delaying purchases as a direct result of Brexit and confusion over powertrain choices.

Exclusive data has been collected for Autocar by market research firm Simpson Carpenter from a sample of more than 1000 British car owners.

It shows that among those whose car is more than two years old, almost half said they had originally planned to replace their car before now. Younger people and those buying or leasing new cars are most likely to be delaying their purchase.

An underlying level of delay is to be expected, as changes in personal circumstances often get in the way of new car buying decisions. But one in four of those surveyed attributed the delay to the effects (potential or already felt) of Brexit, and 39% cited general economic concerns as a reason. A mix of uncertainty about the future of diesel and confusion over which powertrain to buy are the reasons mentioned by 27% of those sampled.

Both Brexit and powertrain concerns have hit the new car market harder than the used, according to the data, with both factors cited by a majority of those intending to get a new car the next time they do upgrade. The premium car category is most badly hit: around a third who mentioned the two factors intend to buy more expensive cars.

The hiatus seems likely to continue until the Brexit uncertainty is resolved. Almost a third claim they will put off their purchase until the effects become clear, with those aged 25-44 and those intending to buy in the next two years most likely to delay their decision. Conversely, two-thirds claim their next car purchase won’t be affected.

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Brexit appears to be affecting people’s choice of brand, too. One in five say they are more or less likely to buy certain marques as a result of Brexit, with German brands such as BMW, Volkswagen and Audi and French brands such as Renault, Peugeot and Citroën all most likely to be dropped from consideration. More people are likely to buy Fords and Toyotas, although Nissan loses slightly more than it gains – possibly as a result of the decision not to build the X-Trail in Sunderland.

Tom Simpson, managing director of Simpson Carpenter, said: “New car sales are clearly being damaged by a political failure to provide clarity – firstly over the future of diesel and then the seemingly neverending Brexit negotiations.

“The new car market is unlikely to recover until these uncertainties are resolved. And in these circumstances, it’s difficult to criticise car manufacturers if they delay decisions to invest in the UK.”

Read more

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Diesel and Brexit blamed as Nissan scraps plans to build X-Trail in Sunderland

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Comments
18

16 May 2019
For holding back the launch of new power trains, particularly the mild hybrids, that suit more buyers than BEV and PHEV. Meanwhile they are offloading 'dirty' diesels.

289

16 May 2019

A good number of my circle of friends have bought new cars within the last 6 months......I dont know one person who has delayed their decision to purchase....for what ever reason, least of all Brexit over which most have completely switched off to the background buzz that is Brexit.

Leases are cheap....if you need a car - you need a car, whatever the governments inabilities.

I dont believe a word of this 'survey', its BS.

16 May 2019

I blame the marketing boys and stupid survey questions. e.g. "It shows that among those whose car is more than two years old, almost half said they had originally planned to replace their car before now. " do I take it to mean potentially people with a 2 year old car were ORiGINALLY planning to replace it with a new car.  I 'originally' plan to change my cars about every 3 months but I see sense and never get round, no rhythm or reason other than common sense.

Cars are just to good, and expensive, now to even contemplate replacing at 2 years.

16 May 2019
xxxx wrote:

I blame the marketing boys and stupid survey questions. e.g. "It shows that among those whose car is more than two years old, almost half said they had originally planned to replace their car before now. " do I take it to mean potentially people with a 2 year old car were Originally planning to replace it with a new car.  I 'originally' plan to change my cars about every 3 months but I see sense and never get round, no rhythm or reason other than common sense.

Cars are just to good, and expensive, now to even contemplate replacing at 2 years.

more than contemplate, I have a new car on order on a 2 year lease. The reason being twofold, I am hoping there will be a wider choice available in 2.5 year time. Also if Corbyn gets into government, quite possible at the moment, he will hammer drivers so I want the opportunity to switch to a cheaper/lower tax vehicle to mitigate the pain.

The reason I have not bought a new car until now was the complete mess up with emission ratings, very few cars were actually available to order for a while, I used it to my advantage to hold out for some new models. Worked out well.Anyone know when a purchase actually shows up in the figures? myself and a lot of my colleagues have finally ordered new cars, but I know in my case I won't get it until later in the year due to lead time so it won't be registered for months.

16 May 2019

 I’ve noticed , and it may be just my part of Britain, that there are lots of 1series and 3 series, now, two or three years ago you didn’t see so many every day, now, it’s almost like road trains, three, four, five even I counted one day, I guess most aren’t bought with actual money, lots must be bought on finance of some sort, when Brexit finally crashes into Britain then we’ll see the true effects, if the cars mentioned go up in price the conversely sales will go down, and what is going to replace them?, we haven’t got a British car industry to talk of, I’m talking about cars most of us could afford to buy not low volume £100,000 + cars, the second hand market could have a boom period....

16 May 2019
Peter Cavellini wrote:

 ?, we haven’t got a British car industry to talk of, I’m talking about cars most of us could afford to buy not low volume £100,000 + cars, the second hand market could have a boom period....

Other than the Astra, LEAF, Qasqai, Evoque, MINI, currently CIVICs, Velar, F-Pace, Range Rover, XE, XF

16 May 2019

Not even worth mentioning Brexit as no matter what the facts are, remoaners will use every opportunity to rubbish it, but as big fat lies go, the following is beggers belief:

Autocar wrote:

Brexit appears to be affecting people’s choice of brand, too. One in five say they are more or less likely to buy certain marques as a result of Brexit, with German brands such as BMW, Volkswagen and Audi and French brands such as Renault, Peugeot and Citroën all most likely to be dropped from consideration. More people are likely to buy Fords and Toyotas, although Nissan loses slightly more than it gains – possibly as a result of the decision not to build the X-Trail in Sunderland.

The author of this article should be thoroughly ashamed of himself. What's the point of making comment without even questioning it's accuracy. Seems you can say anything you want and Autocar these days and they'll print it as fact.

OK for dumb people like myself, will someone PLEASE explain why as a result of Brexit, people will not buy German built BMWs, Audis's and VW's but will buy German made Fords?

They won't buy French made Peugeot, Citroen and Renaults but they will buy French built Toyotas?

And folk will buy fewer Nissan's because the X-Trail isn't being produced in the UK?

This article is nothing but brainwashing, what utter tosh. Where did they hold this survey, outside the national front's HQ ?

 

 

 

 

16 May 2019

Agree with scotty5.  This is total bollocks.  What's holding back buyers in European countries and Japan, then?  Is that Brexit, too?  Bollocks, complete bollocks.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-02-15/european-car-sales-fall-fifth-month-row

16 May 2019

Have to agree with Scotty5 here. I'm not entirely sure how Brexit appears to be influencing people's choice of brand. Is this really about brand? Or is it about who owns the brand and where the car is manufacturered or assembled? I'm pretty sure most people in the UK who buy premium German cars do so simply because they like premium German cars. I'd also wager that they'd probably still buy a premium German car regardless of where it was made. I don't think whether they voted to remain or leave makes any difference.

16 May 2019

Car price inflation has been obscene in recent years, hidden behind headlined monthly payment amounts of finance packages. 

The ONLY reason I'm keeping hold of my current car and not buying a new one is that I resent paying too much for one. For a new model of my current car it costs just over 22% more than it did when I bought it four years ago with the same trim and spec, and it hasn't changed dramatically during that time either, so no excuse for extra regulatory safety kit etc. bumping up the price.

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