Luxury Car Buyer Trends

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The luxury car market is expected to continue to grow significantly. To increase sales and meet consumer expectations in the age of Tesla, luxury automakers need to put their focus and attention on in-market auto buyers interested in purchasing luxury cars. But, who are in-market luxury car buyers? Unacast conducted a foot traffic data study to learn more about how consumers buy new cars.

By using anonymized mobile location data, Unacast analyzed visits to new car dealerships across the U.S. from September 2018 until September 2019. As part of our study, we analyzed luxury car dealerships including Lamborghini, Ferrari, and Tesla. We found that only about 19% of consumers visit luxury brands. While this might seem like a small percentage of auto buyers, luxury car buyers are an important consumer segment that automakers need to be aware of.

Here’s what we found out about in-market luxury car buyers.

In-Market Luxury Car Buyer Trends

Brand Preference Varies by Generation

Luxury car buyers are often very dedicated to their favorite brands. Our study found that different generations prefer different brands. Baby Boomers are interested in Mercedes, Infiniti, and Lexus. Gen Xers prefer to drive Porsches. While Millennials aren’t as interested in luxury cars, their preferred brand is Tesla.

Millennials Aren’t Visiting Too Many Luxury Dealerships

Luxury car dealers are more likely to get visits from Baby Boomers and Gen Xers than Millennials. Why is this the case? It could be that Baby Boomers and Gen Xers are more interested in the status associated with having a luxury car and have enough money saved for a big purchase. Millennials might not want luxury cars because they might want to spend their money on restaurants, clothing, groceries, hobbies, gas, and electronics.

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It’s Okay if the Drive is Long (Sometimes)

Luxury car buyers travel long distances to get to Tesla dealerships. Visitors to Mercedes and Jaguar dealerships also travel far. On the other hand, luxury car buyers who visit Ferrari, Maserati, and Porsche travel less. Millennials don’t mind traveling far for luxury cars. They will travel over 44 miles to visit Tesla dealerships.

They Make Decisions Fast

Baby Boomers, Millennials, and Gen Xers don’t stay in the market too long for luxury brands. Luxury car buyers make their purchase decisions faster than standard car buyers. Millennials are only in-market for less than 18 days. In contrast, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers are in-market for about 20 days. Some brands have shorter average in-market days than others. Ferrari, Land Rover, and Maserati are among the top three luxury brands which have the shortest in-market time. Lexus, Mercedes, Acura, BMW, and Cadillac have the highest average days in-market.

The Future of Luxury Car Market

With the increase in expectations from car buyers, luxury car makers are going to have to make sure that they are aware of their customers’ buying habits. Luxury car buyers make fast purchase decisions, are brand loyal, and will travel long distances to get the car of their dreams. However, car buyer behavior is constantly shifting and it’s important to stay informed about what they are looking for. Luxury car makers can leverage location intelligence to increase their sales and customer satisfaction.

To learn how location data can inform the future of your business, book a meeting with us today.


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