Kiwis renew love affair with large cars

AutoTrader NZ
Published 3 September 2020

According to Turners Auctions, six months of stable fuel prices have given consumers the confidence to venture back into the large car market.

The recent report shows that consumer demand at auction has seen the average sale price for cars in the 3.0-litre plus category reach a two-year high of $13,434.

“For the second quarter in a row, demand has upped the prices Kiwis are willing to pay for a large car. Our last report showed an increase of $4,000 from the 2nd quarter of last year to around $12,000 by the 3rd quarter. Since then, the average price for a large car has gone up by another $1,400, highlighting that consumers are continuing to buck the trend of cautiousness,” says Todd Hunter, Turners spokesperson.

Hunter thinks part of this is due to market conditions, which he describes as being under-supplied for much of 2009, and to stable fuel prices which have given consumers more confidence in managing the day-to-day costs of running a large car.

“In the last year we’ve had lower and more stable fuel prices around the $1.70 mark which is significant when you consider it reached $2.17 in 2008.”

The demand for large cars has been at the expense of cars less than 2.1 litres, with this group falling for the third consecutive quarter, says Hunter.

“Our quarter two figures (released in August last year), showed 60.3% of total sales were of cars less that 2.1 litres. This time, that’s down to 57.7%.”

For the first time in two years, the Subaru Legacy has dropped from its normal spot in the top three brands of second hand car sales. It has been replaced in third place by the Toyota Hiace, reflecting an increase in trade vehicles on the market.

But continuing to dominate first and second place for most popular make and model is the Holden Commodore and Toyota Corolla respectively.

Sales of diesel-fuelled vehicles are have risen 1.6 % to 11.7%, while petrol has dropped one per cent to 88.1%.