Motoring News

Analysed: What folk are seeking in SA used-car market

SOUTH AFRICA’S auto industry has had a bumpy ride for a couple of years thanks to the Covid “crisis”, made worse by vehicle stock shortages and a limping economy. Here are some of the reasons and causes…

The used-car “sweet-spot” in 2021 covered vehicles priced from R200 000-R300 000, up to three years old, and and odo reading around 100 000km – though stock shortages and some other factors maintained some bouyancy. Popular were brands established in SA, even those which had covered greater distances.

Newcomer brand Haval gained most new followers, greatly supported by its Jolion, and motoring portal Cars.co.za provided The Corner with a report of strong demand for products such as Nissan’s long-serving NP200) are growing in popularity. The highest new entry on the model ranking list was Haval’s Jolion small crossover.

R250 000 SWEET SPOT FOE MOST BUYERS

The latest data released by leading motoring portal Cars.co.za provided fascinating insights into the year that was 2021. Consumer experience manager Hannes Oosthuizen told The Corner: “Looking at our headline numbers, most South African car buyers are still searching for cars in the R200 000-R300 000 bracket.

“The average price (for submitted inquiries) worked we calculated as R236 900, slightly less than the 2020 average. The R200 000-R300 000 segment accounted for 20.6% of inquiries to Cars.co.za in 2021, with priced between R150 000 and R200 000 in second place with 16.34%.

“Third place went to R300 009-R399 000 segment – 11.82% of inquries – showing more-expensive vehicles showed ‘fairly significant’ growth over 2020.”

AGE STILL COUNTS ON FORECOURTS

Odometer readings were a lesser concern than those of earlier years – up to 195 000km – though most inquiries (20.33%) through Cars.co.za during 2021 averaged 109 600km.

Vehicle age still, of course, drew the overwhelming bulk of inquiries: 2014-2018, with those from 2017 edged-out other model years with a share of 8.7%.

And a last comment from Oosthuizen: “In other words, the used-car sweet-spot is about the same as previously … a vehicle about three years old that’s logged just more that 100 000km and cost about R240 000.

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