Nearly one quarter of Canadians considering a new vehicle are thinking about buying it in December instead of during the traditional busy purchasing period between March and June, according to a survey released by Kijiji Autos.
“There is a trend in the data that does point to a bit of uncertainty as to when consumers are going to purchase their next vehicle, however we see strength in the data elsewhere that shows very positive signals about consumers looking to buy a car right now,” Robert Karbaum, head of business development at Kijiji Autos said in an interview with Automotive News Canada. “So, it kind of goes both ways.”
The survey also found 23 per cent said they have considered buying or upgrading their car since the start of the pandemic and 19 per cent have visited at least one car dealership.
“Pandemic or no pandemic, the needs of a vehicle exist,” he said.
PUBLIC TRANSIT FEARS
Hesitancy about using public transit amid the pandemic continues to be a growing reason Canadians are buying vehicles of their own. The results showed that 76 per cent of respondents are uncomfortable using shared mobility services/public transit, resulting in a greater interest in owning a car to fulfill their needs.
“That’s an opportunity for car dealers to provide a safe solution for those consumers, and that speaks to the 21 per cent of Canadians that said they specifically need a safer way to handle day-to-day chores and responsibilities in response to the pandemic,” Karbaum said.
Karbaum said the survey was done to dive deeper into car-buying trends nationally and regionally to evaluate how COVID-19 has impacted Canadian behaviours when it comes to vehicle shopping.
In addition to the perceived safety of owning a vehicle over taking public transit, 32 per cent of respondents are looking to buy a vehicle as a way to be more cost-efficient. At the same time, 22 per cent are looking to upgrade to a newer or more luxurious vehicle.
“You have safety and you have financial impact …pushing towards a drive for sales,” Karbaum said.
Additionally, 54 per cent said they were comfortable finding their desired vehicle on an online marketplace, while 73 per cent said they were most confident shopping alone.
The survey or 1,500 randomly selected people was conducted by market research firm Maru and took place between March 26-28. More than 1,200 of the respondents own a car or plan to buy a car in the future.