The Detroiters scored big, and so did luxury in the first quarter ... at least among shoppers perusing online publications where digital firm Jumpstart Auto Group delivers marketing. The company’s new report garners first-quarter shopper data from a dozen or so of the digital titles where it delivers advertising, including Car and Driver, U.S. News Automotive, JD Power Autos, and NADAguides.
Libby Murad-Patel, Jumpstart’s senior director of strategic insights, said the domestics are benefitting from younger buyers' brand loyalty -- which is about as sticky as Teflon -- and their propensity to gauge vehicles by comparison shopping online. "Automakers, particularly the domestic brands, have turned up the volume on quality, affordability, reliability, and technology, which is leveling out the playing field in segments typically dominated by imports,” she said.
Jumpstart's Shopping Report says luxury sedan shoppers are now 29% of all sedan seekers, up a percentage point from 2012. The Cadillac ATS moved into the top ten in that category, grabbing 5% share across Jumpstart’s network. Luxury crossovers constitute 41% of all such vehicles considered on Jumpstart sites, growing 8% from 2012. Cadillac’s Escalade tops that list, with 17% share.
In the mass-market region of the crossover world, Chevrolet Equinox stayed on top with more than an 11% share -- but Ford Edge is gaining, with larger market share in the segment in Q1 compared to its 2012 average.
According to the company’s stats, Ford Focus was the only sedan among the top three to increase its share of shoppers on Jumpstart properties. At the brand level, Chevrolet had the biggest positive movement, with the Impala gaining 17% in share and the Malibu gaining 23% in share.
Jeep is also back in a big way, according to the marketing service. Jumpstart said Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, and Liberty are among the top ten most-shopped SUVs in Jumpstart’s auto vertical, with a combined share of nearly 17%, Ford being the second most-shopped SUV brand with its Escape and Explorer. Chevrolet Tahoe saw the biggest increase in SUV share of shoppers (up 61%) of all vehicles in this segment, while Subaru Forester had a 40% growth in the SUV category across Jumpstart media.