A Downshift in Auto Luxury Upsell: 78% of Those Considering “Near-Entry” Luxury Cars Also Look at Non-Luxury Vehicles

  A Downshift in Auto Luxury Upsell: 78% of Those Considering “Near-Entry”
  Luxury Cars Also Look at Non-Luxury Vehicles

Improved styling, feature content have helped non-luxury models appeal to
potential luxury customers, according to new GfK data

Business Wire

NEW YORK -- December 18, 2012

High-end car makers have long relied on “near-entry” models to upsell standard
car buyers into the luxury category. But new data from GfK’s Automotive team
shows that more than three quarters (78%) of those considering a Near-Entry
Luxury car are also looking at non-luxury models, from Upper Middle Sedans
(36%), Small Cars (23%), and Lower Middle Sedans (19%).

      To download the full report from this study for free, click here.

In addition, the new study indicates that loyalty to the Near-Entry Luxury
category is dropping; only 38% of those who own a car in the category are
planning to buy another Near-Entry Luxury vehicle, compared to 43% in 2007.
Meanwhile, the rate of switching to a non-luxury model has grown – 37% in 2012
versus 29% in 2007.

GfK data shows that the Near-Entry Luxury category accounts for just 4% of
industry sales, while the Upper Middle, Small Car, and Lower Middle segments
combine for 46% of all sales.

“Adding sexier looks to better perceived value for the money and fuel economy
has been a winning combination for non-luxury cars,” said Jeff Campana, Senior
Vice President of GfK Automotive. “It’s clear that a significant number of
auto shoppers who start out looking at Near-Entry Luxury cars wind up buying
in the non-luxury category – with economic uncertainty and high gas prices
likely playing a role.”

More than one third (36%) of Near-Entry Luxury intenders are drawn from
non-luxury replacers; but while these intenders convert at a rate below 100%,
the Lower Middle sedan category grows by about 150% between intention and
purchase. Just 7.1% of vehicle intenders are in the Lower Middle category,
while 17.5% of auto sales come in that category.

      To download the full report from this study for free, click here.

This GfK Automotive study of the Near-Entry Luxury Car category was authored
by GfK analysts Pamela Gudenau and Samantha Tridle.

For nearly 30 years, GfK Automotive has been the preeminent provider of
product, brand and consumer research and consulting to the global automotive
industry. Counting most major Asian, European and North America car makers
among their client base, GfK Automotive research consultants deliver
integrated information and insights to the automotive community.

For more information about GfK Automotive research, contact Jeff Campana at

About GfK

GfK is one of the world’s largest research companies, with more than 12,000
experts working to discover new insights about the way people live, think and
shop, in over 100 markets, every day. GfK is constantly innovating to use the
latest technologies and the smartest methodologies to give its clients the
clearest understanding of the most important people in the world: their
customers. In 2011,GfK’s sales amounted to EUR 1.37 billion.

To find out more, visit www.gfk.comor follow GfK on Twitter:


GfK Marketing and Communications, Consumer Experiences North America
David Stanton, +1 908-875-9844
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