Weekly Dealer Car Enquiries: February 20, 2022

In this series, which we aim to bring to you every week, we’ll be detailing some of the key numbers and trends that we’re seeing in terms of dealer connections made through our site.

As this data is considered somewhat representative of broader industry activity, and serves as one of the more insightful leading indicators for potential car sales, we hope it will fulfil a few purposes for our broad audience. First, to document not just how we’re performing as a business, but how dealers and the wider market stand to perform, so you don’t have to wait til that next set of official sales data.

Without further ado, here’s what happened over the last week.

Total new car enquiries

After a positive month of data, new car enquiries took a backwards step last week, falling from a total of 1,580 queries to just 1,249. That represents a week-on-week decrease in dealer connections of 21% through the PriceMyCar platform.

Volumes were relatively strong across the majority of days last week, it was mainly a case of activity on Friday dropping off significantly. There doesn’t seem to be any particular reason behind the decrease in interest on this day, and in fact, queries doubled across each of the following two days on the weekend.

With the unemployment rate coming in steady last week, albeit amid a change to the composition of hours worked and employment status, the backdrop certainly hasn’t deteriorated to warrant the beginning of a downtrend in new car buying activity, so we suspect last week was more a case of being an anomaly. The x-factor could be interest rates, with the outlook pointing increasingly towards the prospect of at least one rate hike in 2022.

Screenshot 2022-02-21 8.54.17 PM

New car interest by brand

The large drop across the PriceMyCar platform was driven by reduced interest in the market’s leading brands, with the likes of Ford, Kia, Mazda and Subaru all coming unstuck last week and recording a double-digit drop in new car buying interest.

Interest in Toyota remained steady, if not increasing fractionally, despite the auto-maker facing a number of challenges in terms of supply chain issues, particularly surrounding the popular RAV4.

BMW was one of the only bright spots across the entire market last week, with queries regarding the German auto-maker’s models rising by nearly two-thirds compared with the week prior. Although this may be a week-to-week fluctuation, it could also be a sign of interest diverting from its German rival Mercedes-Benz, which has recently moved to a fixed-price agency model. 

 

Prospective New Car Buyer Numbers

Feb 14 – Feb 20 

Feb 7 – Feb 13 

% Change in Enquiries

Mazda

153

186

-17.7%

Kia

140

188

-25.5%

Mitsubishi

107

114

-6.1%

Ford

90

165

-45.5%

Hyundai

90

121

-25.6%

 

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