KBB: Latest Shopping Activity Shows Practical Interest Gains
IRVINE, Calif. — The latest Hot Car Report from Kelley Blue Book's Kbb.com revealed consumer tastes are trending to more practical vehicles rather than SUVs that have enjoyed great success for years.
Four of the five vehicles enjoying the most shopping activity growth on the site were sedans. That group included the Chrysler 300, which had a percentage gain of 31.2 percent. The other sedans were the Toyota Avalon (28.1 percent), Volkswagen CC (25.1 percent) and Mitsubishi Lancer (23 percent).
"It pays to point out that four out of the five top movers in our Hot Car Report are all sedans," noted James Bell, executive market analyst for Kbb.com.
"While much has been made of the influence of the SUV in the overall market, there still is significant interest in vehicles that are more closely tied to the average buyer's needs," Bell continued.
"A trait of ‘buying the most vehicle for the dollar' seems to be deeply ingrained in the American psyche," he added.
However, the leading vehicle in the report had a touch of SUV influence. Posting a 34.2-percent gain was the Mazda CX-9.
Sliding in the opposite direction were mostly offerings from foreign automakers. Among them were the Nissan Murano and BMW X6, which both dropped by 10 percent. Also slipping was the Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class at 12.3 percent.
The domestic vehicle slowing the most in shopping growth was the Buick Lucerne at 11.2 percent.
Dropping the most of all vehicles according to Kbb.com's report was the Porsche Panamera with a decrease of 12.9 percent.
"The Porsche Panamera witnessed the greatest decline in week-over-week traffic. However, the Panamera is not experiencing a crisis, but merely a return to reality," Bell explained.
Moving on to a discussion about newly introduced and redesigned vehicles, KBB spotted the continuing trend of interest in units from Korean manufacturers. Each of the top four units in this portion of the report came from these companies.
The top gainer was the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi at 21 percent. Following up were the 2011 Hyundai Sonata (15 percent), 2011 Kia Sorento (10 percent), and 2010 Hyundai Tucson (6 percent).
"The Suzuki Kizashi might be finally catching on with shoppers as a responsible, yet fun and energetic fuel-efficient small sedan," Bell determined.
"In addition, the inclusion of the three Korean vehicles in the top ‘Intro and Redesigned Models' roster is further evidence of how a strong product can lead to stronger brand reputation and greater shopper consideration," he added.
Just like the overall shopping activity charts, KBB's report indicated that the 2010 Porsche Panamera dropped the most among introduced and redesigned vehicles with a decrease of 13 percent.
Also sinking by double digits were the 2010 Honda Accord Crosstour (-10 percent) and 2011 Infiniti M56 (-11 percent).