Drivers are hanging on to current cars for longer
The credit crunch is putting the brakes on car buying.
As many as 77 per cent of motorists say the current economic climate is having an impact on their purchasing plans, a survey by uSwitch.com found.
A total of 15 per cent are set to spend almost £3,000 less on their next car than on their current motor, while 26 per cent say they are not able to afford a new car at all.
And 47 per cent of motorists will now hold on to their current car for longer than planned.
Only 18 per cent of the 1,011 car owners polled said they were confident enough not to change their future car-buying plans.
The survey results come ahead of this week’s latest official new car figures – for October 2008 – from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.
Sales have dipped in recent months, with even the arrival of September’s new 58-registration plates failing to kick-start purchasing.
Ashton Berkhauer, insurance expert at uSwitch.com, said: “Our research shows the potential size and scale of the slowdown in car sales as Britain’s motorists react to a looming recession.
“Some consumers are writing themselves out of the car buying market entirely, some are reducing their planned spend while others are aiming to ride out the storm by holding on to their existing model for as long as possible. These are all strategies that will help consumers cope, but the impact they could have on both car sales and manufacturing could be huge.”