New Data Shows That Car Buyers Are Still Breathtakingly Loyal To Brand

April 21, 2021
Advice, Automotive

  • Front View of a Silver Mercedes Benz

Despite the tumultuous upheaval in the car market, consumers are still as loyal as they ever were – at least according to the most recent data from IHS. Surveys indicate that once buyers settle on a particular brand, they stick with it, updating the model as time goes by.

There’s a lot of discussion in the market about how “everything is changing” according to reps from IHS. But that isn’t going to translate into brand disloyalty. Instead, it is going to make new offerings even more endearing, encouraging customers to stay put.

For example, you would have thought that buyers would switch to upstart Tesla en masse. And many have. But the overall structure of the car market isn’t changing a great deal. When you ask consumers what they really want, they’ll list all the usual brands, like Mercedes and BMW, that have been around for decades. Tesla might have better autopilot and battery tech, but that doesn’t seem to matter – at least no fundamentally.

Tesla is actually a good example, though, of this idea of brand loyalty in action. The car maker only has three distinct models in mass production at the moment, and yet people are willing to stay with it, through thick and thin. It has a cult-like following.

What’s even more amazing is that the Model S and Model X haven’t had significant updates since they launched. Tesla altered the front end of the Model S slightly in 2016. But since then, the vehicle remains completely unchanged. And yet, it somehow manages to continue dominating in the premium sedan segment – quite remarkable.

Trends like this might have you asking about the benefits of refinancing your car. For instance, you could refinance your car to free up cash for the next model up. This strategy allows customers to remain within a particular brand and get access to the top deals.

Cars With The Highest Loyalty

So which cars are at the top of the pack for loyalty, besides Tesla. Well, that’s an interesting question. Among trucks and SUVs, the stands are the Ford Expedition and Subaru Outback. Both these vehicles seem to create life-long partnerships with their owners. In the luxury SUV market, the Range Rover and Acura RDX appeared to do the best.

Some ethnicities appear to be more loyal to particular brands than others. For instance, African Americans are most loyal to Ford, while Hispanics stuck with their Toyotas for the longest.

The message for brands, therefore, is clear: regularly refresh your lines. Ideally, car makers should be giving their models a big facelift every five years or so, adding all the latest features to keep customers interested. Major product designs help to fire up the same feelings consumers had when they first bought their vehicles, encouraging subsequent purchases.

Tracking customer loyalty is never an easy task. But with so much data collection having already happened, the IHS doesn’t expect trends to change any time soon. Once a consumer buys into a car brand, they like to stick with what they know.


Featured Photo by Liam Martens on Unsplash