Carwow has reported a 60 per cent rise in inquiries since dealerships in England reopened – with most of them coming from London as people look for safer transport options.
The online car buying platform said inquiries went up by three-fifths compared with a typical week during lockdown period, peaking at the highest level so far this year.
Demand for test drives, meanwhile, was up by 92 per cent and calls rocketed by 261.8 per cent during the past week against lockdown – and were at pre-coronavirus levels
Most of the inquiries originated in London, which seemed to echo Carwow consumer poll data showing that 75 per cent of people won’t feel safe on buses and trains until a vaccine is discovered.
Among those making inquiries were people new to the market looking at their options to travel as safely as possible while keeping to social distancing.
A snap poll by Carwow revealed that of those living in London, 80 per cent went by public transport before lockdown but only 40 per cent planned to do so when they resumed regular travel.
The sample size wasn’t given but 84 per cent of people polled said they intended to actively limit their use of public transport, while 86 per cent said they’d feel uncomfortable on any form of public transport at the moment, and three-quarters didn’t expect to feel safe before a vaccine was found.
Carwow motoring expert Vix Leyton said: ‘It appears the questions the automotive trade had during lockdown about what demand would look like are starting to be answered and there is no doubt that there is a promising amount of interest.
‘To capitalise, dealerships need to be ready to go above and beyond to make customers feel comfortable going through the process.
‘We have already seen huge effort from our partners to offer flexibility and remote solutions, from unaccompanied test drives to home delivery and click-and-collect, and the uptake demonstrates they are meeting needs customers have.’
Leyton added: ‘Covid-19 has forced the whole industry to review how modern their processes are, having historically been slow to adapt. It is great to see so many able to pivot to digital at an accelerated pace.
‘We are proud, as a digitally native company with over a decade of online experience, to be in such a strong position to help guide customers and dealerships through this.’
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