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New Luxury Vehicle Survey from AutoTrader Suggests Audi Loyalists Prefer Style & Design


ATLANTA, GA — In the February edition of the Shopper Insights Report, AutoTrader.com experts recommend Leading Luxury Vehicles and Hidden Gems, based on insights from the 2012 New Luxury Vehicle Loyalty Study. Among other things, the study revealed the top reasons luxury buyers stayed loyal to their brand when they purchased another new luxury vehicle. Utilizing the top five reasons that these buyers stayed loyal—Brand Affinity, Quality/Reliability, Driving Performance, Price/Finance/Value and Styling/Design—the experts at AutoTrader.com selected 10 luxury vehicles for the list, with the Cadillac CTS sedan and Volvo S60 being chosen as the best overall picks.

“With the economy beginning to show signs of resurgence, we believe that even more shoppers will turn their attention to luxury vehicles, making now an ideal time to share the insights we have regarding this important segment,” said Rick Wainschel, vice president of automotive insights at AutoTrader.com. “By bridging information gained from our extensive research with the vast automotive knowledge within AutoTrader.com, we aim to facilitate deeper connections between buyers and sellers.”

The 2012 New Luxury Vehicle Loyalty Study was conducted by Polk and AutoTrader.com with a total of 1,485 U.S. luxury buyers to gain a deeper understanding of the reasons why these buyers stay with, leave or move to a luxury brand. Loyalty is defined as a buyer who buys a luxury vehicle from the same make as the one owned previously.

Beyond the top five reasons luxury buyers remained loyal, the study also revealed that the primary drivers of loyalty differed by brand. For example, the main reason Cadillac buyers stayed loyal is not the same as the reason BMW buyers stayed loyal.

Brand affinity was selected by a significantly higher percentage of Cadillac loyalists than any other luxury brand.

Quality/reliability was cited more often by Mercedes-Benz and Acura loyalists as a reason for returning to that brand.

• Audi loyalists rank styling and design significantly higher than other brand loyalists as a reason to stay.

• BMW loyalists were more apt to identify driving performance as a reason for their return purchase than other luxury owners.

• Price ranked much higher as a reason for Acura owner loyalty compared to the other luxury brands in the study.

AutoTrader.com experts leveraged these insights to select two vehicles that were good on all five criteria for their overall picks. Then, they chose two vehicles—one vehicle from the brand that was rated highest by its loyalists in each category and one hidden gem shoppers should consider—for each of the following four categories: Brand Affinity, Driving Performance, Price/Value and Styling/Design. Since quality and reliability are considered to be the cost of entry for vehicles in the luxury market, experts did not choose vehicles based on those factors independently.

AutoTrader.com Expert’s Top Picks: Leading Luxury Cars and Hidden Gems

The full report, brought to you by the AutoTrader.com Trend Engine, provides in-depth analysis of these vehicles—from the reasons experts selected the vehicles to the level of interest consumers have shown these vehicles while shopping on AutoTrader.com.

About AutoTrader.com
Atlanta-based AutoTrader.com, created in 1997, is the Internet’s ultimate automotive marketplace and consumer information website. AutoTrader.com aggregates in a single location millions of new cars, used cars and certified pre-owned cars from thousands of auto dealers and private sellers and is a leading online resource for auto dealers, individuals and manufacturers to advertise and market their vehicles to in-market shoppers. The company also provides a robust suite of software tools for dealers and manufacturers to help them manage and market their vehicle inventory and display advertising on the Internet. AutoTrader.com continues to grow key business metrics, including revenue, profitability and site traffic. Today, AutoTrader.com attracts millions of unique monthly visitors who utilize the site to review descriptions, photos and videos of vehicles for sale; research and compare vehicles; review pricing and specials; and read auto-related content like buying and selling tips and editorial coverage of major auto shows and automotive trends. AutoTrader.com operates one other auto marketing brand, AutoTraderClassics.com. AutoTrader.com also owns used vehicle management software company vAuto, Kelley Blue Book (Kbb.com), HomeNet Automotive, a leading provider of online inventory management and merchandising solutions for the automotive retail industry and VinSolutions, a leading provider of end-to-end solution platforms for dealers. AutoTrader.com is a majority-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises. Providence Equity Partners is a 25 percent owner of the company and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is also an investor. For more information, please visit www.autotrader.com.

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