Consumers would welcome help in funding repairs
Is there an opportunity for dealerships to extend their vehicle financing business into the financing of expensive repairs?
A survey of consumers conducted online for Automotive News by DealerRater.com indicates yes.
The survey, conducted May 14-21, put the following question to 21,669 consumers who had recently visited a dealership to buy or lease a vehicle or for service:
Dealerships are known for helping customers finance their vehicles, often at better terms than the consumer could find on their own. If you had an expensive repair, would you want the dealership to help arrange financing for that, too?
A plurality of 43 percent said "yes." Only 19 percent said "no." The remaining 38 percent responded "not sure."
|Q. Dealerships are known for helping customers finance their vehicles, often at better terms than the consumer could find on their own. If you had an expensive repair, would you want the dealership to help arrange financing for that, too?|
|Note: List includes brands with more than 150 respondents.|
|Source: DealerRater.com survey of 21,669 consumers conducted May 14 – 21.|
Looking at the responses by brand, the percentage of respondents who said "yes" was highest among customers of lower-price, mass-market brands, rather than among luxury brands. While luxury brands are known for higher-priced parts and service charges, the mass-market brands are favored by consumers, including non-prime ones, who most often rely on F&I managers to help them obtain affordable financing when purchasing a vehicle.
Kia was the brand with a highest percentage of "yes" responses, with fully half of all respondents saying they would want the dealership to help arrange financing for an expensive repair. Next highest: Dodge at 48 percent and Chevrolet at 47 percent.
Audi and Subaru were tied for fewest "yes" responses at 33 percent. So even in the least-favorable case, a third of customers said they would welcome the dealership's assistance in arranging financing for certain repairs.
Lexus customers were least interested, with 26 percent of those respondents saying "no," followed by Acura and Audi, tied at 24 percent.
Interestingly, of the 6,273 respondents who had most recently visited a dealership specifically for service, rather than because they were shopping for a vehicle, only 30 percent said "yes" while an equal 30 percent said "no."
Of those who had visited the dealership to shop, new-vehicle buyers and leasing customers were slightly more inclined to say "yes" than used-vehicle buyers and leasers: 50 percent vs. 46 percent.
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