As the SMMT reveals that new car registration figures fell in June by a third year-on-year, carwow offers much needed hope for the industry. New car quotes and enquiries continue to match, if not exceed, the volumes carwow was reporting pre-Covid-19 in 2020.
CEO of Carwow, James Hind, comments: “Since dealerships opened on 1st June, we have seen a sustained increase in quotes and enquiries, translating into sales, demonstrating that buyers are coming to market with an intent to purchase. Indeed, June saw some of our busiest days for sales this year, with some reaching higher than those recorded before the reality of the Covid-19 pandemic had hit most UK homes.
“Although we’ve not relived the spike in enquiries we witnessed in the first week of June – the highest level in 2020 to date and representative of the pent up demand - the stability of the general upward trend in enquiries suggests that appetite to buy is very real, as our sales figures show.”
A lockdown poll conducted by carwow revealed that 75% of consumers won’t feel safe on buses and trains until a vaccine is discovered, indicating that the people’s preference for the foreseeable future is to utilise their own personal modes of transport. This could be bolstering interest from buyers either looking to upgrade their existing vehicle or invest in a new car for the first time, a hypothesis supported by data that showed that the highest level of enquiries in the week following the English dealerships opening came from London.
Hind continues: “It’s clear that consumer confidence is buoyed by the easing of lockdown, and those dealers that were quick to adapt both physically and digitally during that time have been well placed to make the most of this. The longer-term picture is impossible to predict as the UK works its way to creating a new normal, and we believe government support is vital to keep the automotive industry on the right trajectory.”
Interestingly, pre-Coronavirus, carwow demonstrated that buyer interest in battery electric vehicles (BEVs) was growing exponentially year-on-year - February saw a 243% year-on-year increase in BEV enquiries. However, carwow configurations for alternative fuelled vehicles (AFVs) had slowed since the UK went into lockdown, something carwow saw in the German market as well.
With the ease of lockdown, traffic to carwow.de bounced back but electric car interest was sluggish to return. Government intervention and a boost to the subsidy on 4th June resulted in an overnight improvement in Germany, with enquiries for electric cars almost returned to pre-lockdown levels and AFVs in general, now making up 49% of all configurations.
Hind concludes: “Whilst scrappage seems to have been ruled out, there have been whispers of a VAT cut, and we would expect a move like that to have a powerful, positive impact. That said, it’s heartening to see the short-term landscape is much brighter than anticipated and we are working closely with our dealer community to support them in maximising opportunities.”
*Article Source http://www.carwow.co.uk