New Cars For the Upscale

New Cars For the Upscale

Of significant interest to those advertising to the automotive market, a recent Forrester study reports that more than one in six affluent households (income in excess of $100,000) bought a new car in 2001. Another 4% bought used cars, and affluent households spend $25,000 every five years to replace their vehicle.

Affluent households want the new-car smell. More than one in five North American affluent and nonaffluent households bought a car in 2001. The difference: The affluent bought four times as many new cars as used, while the nonaffluent bought 32% more used cars than new.

Affluent men were 34% more likely than affluent women were to buy a car in 2001. But don’t think this means that you should start targeting affluent bachelors - nearly one in five affluent couples bought a new car in 2001, compared with 12% of affluent single households.

The affluent buy a variety of brands. The top car brands - Ford and Chevrolet - are the same for the affluent and the nonaffluent. The difference is that those brands are owned by 35% of nonaffluent households but only by 23% of affluent households. The reason is that while the affluent are six times more likely to buy brands like Mercedes and BMW, they are just as likely to mix it up with a Volkswagen or a Mercury.

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