April 2012

Study finds auto insurance shopping rate lowest in five years

(April 30, 2012) WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. — The auto insurance shopping rate has reached the lowest point in the past five years, with only 25 percent of insurance customers indicating they shopped for a new insurer in the past 12 months, down eight percentage points from 2011, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study released today.

Kelley: April new-car sales recovery demonstrates continued strength

(April 29, 2012) IRVINE, Calif. — Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com) projects new-vehicle sales to reach 1,148,000 units, or a 14.0 million seasonally adjusted sales rate (SAAR), this month.  This will account for a less than 1 percent decline in volume relative to April 2011, when the industry posted sales of nearly 1,158,000. 

Strong April results push 2012 auto sales forecast to 14.4 million

(April 27, 2012) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — April auto sales will continue at the strong pace set in the first quarter for an estimated Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) this month of 14.4 million light vehicles, according to Edmunds.com. The surging sales performance so far this year has forced Edmunds.com to revise its 2012 auto sales forecast from 13.6 million to 14.4 million units.

Consumers spend only half of recommended down payment on new car purchases

(April 26, 2012) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — U.S. consumers averaged an 11 percent down payment on new car purchases in 2011, according to Edmunds.com. The average is only slightly more than half of Edmunds.com's recommended 20 percent down payment, and puts buyers at risk of immediately owing more than the car is worth.

Consumer Reports: Honda CR-V narrowly outpoints Mazda CX-5

(April 26, 2012) YONKERS, N.Y. — With its large back seat, easy access and ample cargo space, the family-friendly Honda CR-V narrowly topped the Mazda CX-5 in Consumer Reports' latest head-to-head small SUVs tests.

On paper, the redesigned CR-V and new CX-5 appear very similar. Both can accommodate five passengers, have comparable dimensions, are available with front- or all-wheel drive, and are priced about the same. They also finished very close in CR's overall road-test scores—with a 77 and a 75, respectively — just under the segment-leading Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester.

Study finds dealers in China having more difficult time making a profit

(April 24, 2012) BEIJING — A changing economic and regulatory environment, coupled with more products and dealerships, have led China vehicle dealers to report lower profits on 2011 operations, compared with 2010, according to the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2012 China Dealer Attitude Study.

Kelly Blue Book: Rising used-car values aiding new-vehicle sales

(April 23, 2012) IRVINE, Calif. — Kelley Blue Book (kbb.com) today reports that rising used-car values are aiding new-vehicle sales.  According to Kelley Blue Book's Blue Book Market Report for April 2012, after a sluggish start to the year, gains in used-car values have accelerated in recent weeks.  Rising used-car values likely have played a role in supporting the increase in new-vehicle sales in recent months, especially sales of fuel-efficient vehicles.

Honda, Acura take top honors in Edmunds' Best Retained Value awards

(April 21, 2012) SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Honda and Acura took home the top prizes in Edmunds.com's second annual Best Retained Value Awards, which recognize the brands and new car models that have the highest projected residual value after five years, expressed as a percentage of their True Market Value (TMV) when sold new.

Total Car Score ranks top 2012 alternative fuel vehicles

(April 20, 2012) LOS ANGELES — Total Car Score today released its ranking of the top 2012 alternative fuel models for each major vehicle segment. "Buying an alternative fuel vehicle has become the equivalent to buying a smartphone," said Karl Brauer, editor-in-chief of Total Car Score.

Study finds California is 'greenest' when it comes to car buying

(April 20, 2012) CHICAGO — Cars.com has compiled a list of U.S. cities with the most and least eco-friendly car shoppers. The site looked at search data from its millions of site visitors and determined that, based on their searches for vehicles that get more than 40 mpg, California shoppers are the greenest in the U.S., and the Southern states are the least green.