CarGurus Study Uncovers How Pandemic Impacted Canadian Automotive Industry in 2020
“When compared to our previous research, the latest CarGurus COVID-19 Sentiment Study paints a consistent picture that points to a silver lining for the Canadian auto industry amid the pandemic,” said
The study’s major findings include:
Inventory and Pricing Perception
The pandemic has disrupted vehicle inventory, and many shoppers have taken notice of its impact on selection and pricing:
- Pandemic buyers were nearly 2x more likely to say prices were lower than expected, when compared with those who are currently shopping (36% vs. 19%).
- 10% of those who bought during the pandemic said vehicle selection was much worse than expected and 21% said it seemed somewhat worse.
As the pandemic continues, comfort and familiarity with online shopping tools has grown and shoppers are increasingly considering digital retail options when looking for a vehicle:
- Before the pandemic, 26% of respondents said they were open to buying a vehicle online and that has increased to 50% as of the most recent November research. This openness to buying online has not wavered since June (55%) or April (60%)—despite dealerships reopening across the country.
- Even though shoppers are becoming more open to digital retail, only 37% would prefer to buy a vehicle in this manner. In particular, shoppers are more likely to prefer online price negotiation (68%) and online financing (50%).
Public Transit and Ride-Sharing
The pandemic has disrupted many facets of people’s lives and that includes how they travel from place to place and how they view vehicle ownership.
- As of November, 43% of previous rideshare users and 49% of public transportation users expect to decrease or stop their use of these services. This has remained fairly consistent over the course of the pandemic (41% in June, 51% in April for ride sharing; 50% in June and 54% April for public transportation).
- Vehicles offered people an entertaining diversion during the pandemic with 46% of purchasers using their car more for road trips or longer drives, and 44% agreeing that they see their cars as a source of escape or fun during this time.
Founded in 2006,
To learn more about
CarGurus® is a registered trademark of
Source: CarGurus, Inc.