Kantar Media's global network of TGI recently published a study
on worldwide trends in car ownership and purchase intention, which
reveals in detail the - often dramatic - fluctuations by market of
consumers who have a car, what sort they have and who is seeking to
buy a new car in the future.
Among Chinese adults*, 33% intent to buy a car, one of the
highest among all markets covered in this research report, compared
to 33% in France and Australia, 32% in Britain, 29% in US, 21% in
Germany, and only 6% in South Korea and 4% in India.
- 41% of potential Chinese car buyers are willing to spend equivalent of 30,000 euros or more on a new car
- 14% in Germany
- 10% in UK
- 10% in Australia
- 5% in Spain
- 4% in France
For all potential buyers, 41% would willingly spend the
equivalent of euro 30,000 or more on a new car, a distant leader
among all markets surveyed, as the proportion was only 14% in
Germany, 10% in UK and Australia, 5% for Spain and 4% for France.
It again underlines the value potential of the China market to the
It could be partly explained by the fact that car ownership in
China is still relatively low. In China (for China car ownership
only, no licence information gathered), the figure is 34%, while
84% of adults (aged 18+) in France have a driving licence
themselves and a car in the household, compared to 81% in Germany
and the United States, 75% in Spain, 74% in Australia, 67% in Japan
and 64% in Britain.
In China, 25% of 18-24 year olds have access to a car at home,
rising steeply to 48% for 25-34 year olds. However, car ownership
drop off sharply after around age 45, very different to Europe
where those in later middle age are amongst the most likely groups
to have a car. This can be explained in part by it being common
practice in China for the older generation to be supported by their
children, who may also have offsprings themselves, thus stretching
their disposable income beyond car ownership.
In China, going online is the most relied upon means of
information when buying a new car, followed by recommendations from
friends and relatives.
When it comes to the specific choice criteria that are important
to new car buyers when making their selection, there are some key
variations. In China, safety is of particular importance (and the
only country ranking safety first), followed by the car brand
itself and then the service and repair network. In US, price is
most important, followed by reliability and then fuel consumption.
In Germany, Spain and Britain, South Africa, price also tops the
list. But in France, comfort and safety are more important