More US New-Vehicle Deals Included a Trade-In in 2011

Grace Hamulic

More new-vehicle buyers in the US market replaced and traded in their aging models in 2011 than in 2010, based on a profile of demographic data from retail transactions with vehicle age and trade-in information collected by J.D. Power’s Power Information Network® (PIN).

More than one-half (52.7%) of mass-market, or non-luxury, new-vehicle transactions in 2011 included a trade-in compared with 49.1% of deals in 2010—a difference of 3.6 percentage points. Our PIN data also indicates that the average age of all trade-ins across the industry rose to 6.2 years on average, from 6.1 years in 2010. Among mass-market trade-ins, the average age rose slightly higher to 6.4 years from 6.2 years in 2010. Slightly less than 40% of new-vehicle transactions included a same-nameplate trade-in in both years. Continue reading ›

US Auto Market Experiences Solid Ending To a Good Sales Year

The US auto market finished 2011 on a robust note in spite of concerns about both the domestic and global economies, as well as significant setbacks to production and inventory levels for two major Japanese automakers following the devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Nearly 10% more new cars and light trucks were sold in the US market during the past year in comparison to 2010—12.75 million unit sales in 2011 vs. 11.56 million unit sales in 2010. The final (retail and fleet) sales tally was only slightly stronger than projected by J.D. Power’s Power Information Network® (PIN) and LMC Automotive a few weeks ago in their monthly forecast. Continue reading ›

US Market: Trade-in Percentages Up, Lower APRs Remain Popular

Grace Hamulic

In October 2011, more than one-half (53.6%) of all new-vehicle deals included a trade-in, up from 49.9% of deals in October 2010, according to Power Information Network® (PIN) retail transaction data from J.D. Power and Associates. It’s noteworthy that during the past year, PIN data indicates that the percentage of trades with negative equity (amount owed on trade-in that is greater than the vehicle’s value) continued to drop. About 22.5% of trade-ins were upside down in October, which was down from 23.2% in the same month a year ago. The new-vehicle sales outcome in October was brighter this year than a year ago.

A few more highlights gleaned from PIN retail transaction data in October this year vs. the same month in 2010 are summarized:

• It’s likely that more buyers and lessees replaced their current older vehicles in October 2011, since the average age of a trade-in from all nameplates rose to 6.5 years from an average trade-in vehicle age of 6.4 years in October 2010. The trade-in vehicle age does not appear to have changed much.

• Interestingly, the age of luxury vehicle trades in October 2011 was younger than the industry overall—averaging 5.3 years old vs. 6.5 for the industry. Continue reading ›

Chevrolet Volt, Nissan Leaf Buyer Profiles Differ Slightly

Mike Murray

During the first 6 months of 2011, buyers or lessees of the new Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) tended to be slightly older and more often male than buyers of the Nissan Leaf battery-electric vehicle (BEV), based on Power Information Network® (PIN) retail transaction data from J.D. Power and Associates. Both models launched in the US market in December 2010.

PIN data indicates that in the first half of 2011, nearly one-fourth (24.3%) of Nissan Leaf transactions were by females, while only 17.4% of Volt transactions were by female buyers—a significant difference of 8.9 percentage points. In addition, the average buyer age for the Leaf was slightly younger—the average customer was 51 years old compared with 52 years of age for Volt buyers or lessees. Continue reading ›