Study: Older Buyers Expected to Dominate New Car Market


ROCHESTER — According to the Foresight Research 2013 Dealership Report, based on a study of 7,543 recent U.S. new car and truck buyers, not all buyers use the same criteria to choose a dealer or are influenced by the same dealer experience and sales processes. 

Automotive forecasters believe that older buyers will continue to dominate the new car market for a least a few years, while younger buyers will slowly but steadily enter the market as the economy and job markets continue to recover. Different buyers have different priorities and meeting these expectations impact the outcome. The study is about how dealers can modify the sales experience to meet the needs of different buyer groups and better influence the purchase — the essential goal for improving sales.

Foresight Research found:

  •  While 17 different automotive marketing communication channels are analyzed in this study, none are more influential to the purchase decisions of new car and truck buyers than the dealership experience with the exception of prior brand experience. (49 percent of all buyers this past year report that their dealership experience was highly influential to their decision to purchase the vehicle they did).
  • The average new vehicle buyer today is older (nearly half are over age 55). They are also wealthier and experienced with the buying process. Dealer reputation and relationships are key to this group.
  • Younger buyers (many of them first time buyers) bring a narrower set of expectations into their buying process. These buyers want and need dealer assistance, but one out of four say their dealership experience took too long.
  •  Buyers aged 35-54 (representing 37 percent of current buyers) reflect a mixture of their younger and older counterparts. Like younger buyers, they are very concerned with getting a good price/deal, and financing options. Yet like older buyers, they have high expectations of their dealer experience.