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Consumer Demand for Luxury Vehicles Wanes

October 13, 2011

NEW YORK — A recent survey conducted by research firm TNS revealed that almost one in three luxury car owners have a more negative attitude toward purchasing another luxury vehicle in the future.

Among luxury vehicle owners whose attitude toward the segment have been negatively impacted, the most common reason cited was current and future affordability of ownership (74 percent). Insurance and maintenance (43 percent) also were cited as a pivotal concerns for future purchase, according to TNS.

"Clearly, the high visibility of the recent debt crisis and the ensuing mayhem in the financial markets is causing negative sentiment toward the luxury vehicle segment," says William Bruno, vice president for TNS. "What is most telling is the similar level of negative attitudes expressed by a large portion of existing luxury vehicle owners, as well as non-owners who aspire to own luxury vehicles."

The survey also indicated that 19 percent of luxury vehicle owners cited the lack of fuel economy in most luxury brands as the reason they were shifting away from luxury models.

"The high focus on fuel economy is surprising to us, because, according to our research, many luxury brands offer competitive gas mileage when compared to similarly equipped, non-luxury mid-sized vehicles," Bruno said. "The overall perceptions aren't matching up with reality and this is a great opportunity for marketers and manufacturers to continue demonstrating the real economics associated with luxury brands."

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