'Women are one of the fastest growing groups of car consumers' - study

<i>Image: iStock</i>
<i>Image: iStock</i>

Did you know that 85% of car buying decisions are influenced by women? And that women are one of the fastest growing groups of car consumers in the world? Just this year, we saw Saudi Arabian women finally being allowed to obtain driver’s licences. 

So, what are women looking for in a car? According to a survey conducted by Kelley Blue Book, women are likely to prefer non-luxury sedans and SUVs with safety ranking higher on the priority list than durability and reliability.

Factors to consider

The survey highlights that women prioritise value and practicality and that a woman’s rational needs seem to be of more importance than her emotional needs.

READ: Avoid these mistakes when buying a new car

Stephanie Teixeira, Marketing Manager at car retailer getWorth, says that other research suggests that only 38% of woman are confident about buying a car, and generally take 75 days to make a car purchase.

                                                                        Image: iStock

Although the car industry is no longer a man’s world, research shows that women are still apprehensive when it comes to the car-buying process.

According to a study done by CDK Global, women used the words 'stressed,' 'overwhelmed,' 'taken advantage of' and 'panic' when reviewing their in-dealership experience. It appears that many women still feel patronised or fear when it comes to buying a car. 

Teixeira says that confidence plays a significant role in any buying decision, especially one as big as a car purchase. "The more you know, the more confident you will be."

Kelley Blue Book shares five tips for women buying a car:

1. Do your research

You cannot do enough research when it comes to buying the car of your dreams. Go online and do your homework to ensure it ticks all the boxes both practically and aesthetically.

Find out how much the car sells for and whether there are different options or models available. The more you know, the better equipped you are when it comes to the actual buying process.

2. Stay in control of your outcomes

Once you are armed with all the information you could possibly have obtained, contact your chosen dealership or online car-buying site.

If a salesperson is pushy, disrespectful or intimidating, do not do business with them. You decide the course of your car-buying experience. Be upfront and remember, you are the one in control. 

3. Test drive before buying

Take the car of your choice for a test drive. If you have a few cars on your list, test drive all of them and pick the one that you enjoy driving the most. Do not let a salesperson persuade you to choose something else. 

4. Don’t just sign on the dotted line

Take your time. Make sure you read and understand the contracts given to you and don’t be afraid to ask for a clearer explanation if you are unsure of something.  Do not sign agreements to ‘just get it over and done with’. 

5. Buy a car online

Decide whether you want to buy privately, through a dealership or online. If you choose to go through a dealership, do your homework on the dealership options around you.

If it is through a website, be sure to check the credentials and read the online reviews. If you want to buy privately, always take someone with you, not only for safety reasons, but also to assist you in the inspection of the car.

                                                                             Image: iStock

CDK stats show that purchasing a car online is proving more and more popular with women. 

"In the last 6 months alone, getWorth has seen a 6.63% increase in the ratio of female to male visitors as well as a 20% increase in overall female visitors to the site.

If you purchase from a reputable online car retailer like getWorth, customers essentially get more because they incur less overheads and, particularly in our case, use groundbreaking technology to determine real, fair pricing for the consumer," Teixeira shares.

Wheels24's Janine Van der Post is an avid petrolhead and shares her thoughts on what she looks for in cars: "Stylish designs, impressive power figures to match and dynamics have always been key points. At the same time, I have always loved SUVs and bakkies just as much. Now as a mother and a wife, my requirements are still the same but perhaps in a different order.

"With a little person to consider, as well as the safety of my husband, my priorities have shifted. While good looks are still important, a large boot is vital, just as much as having numerous storage compartments throughout a car. I absolutely love seat pockets behind the front row, just as much as Isofix and safety features are now essentials."

"But just because I'm driving a mommy-van or a SUV, doesn't mean I don't want the kind of power and torque figures which will leave me lagging behind or unable to pull a quick overtake when necessary."

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