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A new phenomenon for the car industry: ‘iPhonification’

Time 5 years ago

CONSUMERS change their car more often than they change their mattress or mobile phone, according to data produced by automotive experts, cap hpi.

The findings reveal that some car manufacturers now see average returns of vehicles in 24 months, and there is evidence of a growing number of 18-month leases in the market. In contrast, mattresses should be changed every seven or eight years and mobile phone contracts tend to last for between 18 and 24 months.

Car manufacturers are managing volumes in the used market by varying contract lengths by model and remarketing channels.


Philip Nothard, retail and consumer specialist at cap hpi, said: ‘What we are seeing is the ‘‘iPhonification’’ of the car industry as consumers increasingly pay to drive rather than pay to own their vehicles. It’s the same model as the mobile phone industry.’

The growth of personal contract purchase (PCP) and other finance options is having a profound effect on the motor industry. Personal Contract Hire (PCH) is also on the increase, as consumers increasingly look towards ‘usership’ rather than ‘ownership’. Cap hpi estimates that around 80 per cent of new car sales are on finance.

Added Philip Nothard: ‘Not so long ago it was fairly common for motorists to have their cars for a minimum of five years or longer but that has now changed dramatically and dropped to just two years for millions of motorists.

‘After buying a house, the car was usually the biggest outlay for most consumers but now they are far more likely to change their car more often than their mattress.


‘Consumer demand remains strong in the used car market and there are lots of used bargains waiting to be snapped up. As PCP becomes more popular and accessible in the used market, motor dealers expect its use to double in the future so we’re going to see people changing their cars with increasing regularity.’

MORE: Used car market is showing its resilence, according to BCA

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Dave Brown's avatar

Dave, production editor on Car Dealer Magazine, is a journalist with more than 30 years' experience in the worlds of newspapers, magazines and public relations.

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