AA Ireland recently surveyed a panel of over 7,000* motorists on their plans to purchase new, second hand and electric vehicles in 2010 and beyond. Overall, 16% hope to change their car this year. Results found the majority (54%) intend to purchase a second hand car. 6% plan to buy a new car and a minimal amount (0.3%) plan to buy an electric vehicle in 2010.
68% of motorists stated they are not likely to buy a new car at any stage in the near future. 6% intend to buy a new car in 2010 with the remaining 26% not planning to invest in a new car until beyond 2012. Many motorists reported inabilities to secure car loans or are still paying off loans to their current car. However, some anticipate the current fuel economy may drive the need for a new car as motorists change to a diesel engine. According to recent CSO figures on new car sales, 34.2% were petrol and 62.1% were diesel. This is a major turnaround on the established pattern and shows that Diesel is now the fuel of choice.
Only 0.3% of respondents said that they will buy an electric car in 2010 but a healthy 11% hope to purchase one beyond 2010. 53% never plan on converting to electric, 34% are still undecided. While the electric car was favoured in theory, motorists are waiting until the infrastructure is more developed. They remain concerned about the practicalities and efficiency for long distance journeys. Usage is not yet applicable to rural locations however results predict a dramatic increase beyond 2010 as the technology advances.
Most car purchases are of second hand vehicles. 54% of motorists surveyed are planning to buy a second hand car in the future. Almost 10% intend to purchase in 2010. A quarter of drivers are still undecided.
‘Buying a car can be a daunting task. You want to be confident that you are making the right choice’ says David Murphy, AA Technical Services Manager. ‘Reports of dodgy dealers prevail our nation’ says Dave. ‘An AA Vehicle Inspection will give you peace of mind, and help you to protect your investment. It includes a full mechanical and electrical check to ascertain any pre existing damages’. To avoid uncertainty, complete an AA Car Data Check to find out if a used car has got a hidden history.
The AA emphasises the importance of efficient car maintenance as motorists keep their cars for longer “Drivers of cars over 4 years of age are three times as likely to call out the AA than drivers of cars under 2 years old.” Says Murphy. “As our vehicles get older we expect to see an increased number of call outs for age-related problems, and we are just beginning to see those effects now. “Of course, brand new cars break down as well, but whether your car is new or not-so-new the philosophy is the same – prevention is better than cure.”
It is worth remembering that batteries typically only last for 3 to 5 years and will need to be replaced as the car gets older. AA attends 150,000 call outs per year with battery and electrical problems between them accounting for nearly half of all incidents. The risk of battery failure is twice as high for a four year old car than for a one year old car. Tyres will usually last no more than 40-50,000 kilometres before they need to be changed. It is important to check them thoroughly to make sure that they are not damaged or worn and that they are inflated correctly.
Preparing for trouble
Help reduce the risk of breakdown by simple things like:
The AA wishes to offer the following safety advice in the event of a breakdown;
The AA attends about 150,000 car breakdowns every year. You get all sorts of problems but the AA Patrol Force repairs almost 80% of cars on the spot and gets them back on the road. Impressive as this is, there are still plenty of cases where replacement parts and garage repairs are needed. Batteries, clutches, engines – they can mean big bills. Breakdown Repair Cover, protects members against the unwelcome burden of unplanned and expensive car repairs covering repairs of up to €1000. The AA is currently offering an introductory fee of €66 before May 31st 2010.
Please refer to AA technical services for further offers. http://www.aaireland.ie/technical/ or phone 1890 456555
*AA online survey carried out as part of AA Motorists’ Panel research, 7,000+ responses received between 23rd April to 12th May 2010.