Car buyers still favour ownership over ‘usership’, according to survey

Time 10:08 am, July 30, 2019

MOST car buyers still want to own their vehicle, according to’s latest Consumer Insight Panel survey.

The research by independent agency Insight Advantage, which polled the views of 1,006 car buyers in May, found that more than three-quarters (75.8 per cent) liked owning their car, while 80.4 per cent said they favoured having exclusive access to their own car.

However, with car manufacturers, dealers and leasing providers rolling out flexible mobility services based on ‘usership’ rather than ownership, the survey found more than a third (34.6 per cent) of buyers expressing an interest in car subscription services.

Response to car-sharing schemes was slightly less positive, with just over a quarter (28.8 per cent) saying they would consider sharing a car with a friend if it meant reducing their monthly motoring costs, dropping to 19.4 per cent that would consider sharing with a stranger, even if it reduced monthly motoring costs by 30 per cent.

Dermot Kelleher, pictured, head of marketing and business intelligence at the car search website, said: ‘Our consumer research shows that when it comes to cars, ongoing exclusive access to a vehicle of their own is a priority for the majority, and while personal contract purchase and personal contract hire aren’t technically outright ownership they provide people with the reassurance of exclusivity and status.

‘However, nothing is forever, and with a new generation of buyers used to paying subscriptions for entertainment services, we can also see some evidence of younger cohorts, and those in London in particular, being more open to these new models.’

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Car Dealer has been covering the motor trade since 2008 as both a print and digital publication. In 2020 the title went fully digital and now provides daily motoring updates on this website for the car industry. A digital magazine is published once a month.

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