Are global consumers ready to buy their next car via an e-commerce platform?
March 7th, 2024, Lesley Simeon

Are global consumers ready to buy their next car via an e-commerce platform?

Last year, South Korean auto brand Hyundai announced it would be selling its vehicles to US consumers on Amazon. The announcement has since raised concerns, primarily among dealers who feel the partnership will throw open doors to a more direct-to-consumer sales model. But would consumers be okay with buying cars from platforms they would typically purchase t-shirts, shoes and biscuits from?

A recent YouGov survey asked consumers across 17 international markets how willing, if at all, they would be to purchase their next new car through an e-commerce platform like Amazon. More than half of them (52%) say they would be unwilling to do so. However, 15% of consumers across all markets say they would be prepared to buy a new car from an e-commerce platform. Although this might seem like a small proportion of consumers, any brand trying something new banks on the early adopters to pave the road for others to follow.

Further, men are more likely than women (18% vs 11%) to say they are willing to buy a new car in this way. But one in five men (20%) are also not sure about what they feel, whether they are willing or not, to buy a car online.

Moving on to data from individual markets, we see that consumers in the UAE (39%) account for the largest proportion who say they are willing to buy their next car on an e-commerce platform. Indians (33%) and Indonesians (32%) follow. In Europe, Italians are the most likely (17%) to say the same.

Danes are the least likely to jump at the prospect of buying a car from an e-commerce site (4%), followed by Swedes (7%). Britons (8%), Poles (8%) and Germans (9%) are among consumers who are least likely to buy cars off e-commerce platforms as well.

Unsurprisingly then, Danes lead, across markets (70%), in saying they would be unwilling to buy a car from an e-commerce platform, followed by the French (65%) and Swedes (64%).

Half of our American respondents (50%) and nearly six in ten Brits (58%) also say they aren’t keen on shopping for cars on e-commerce platforms. In Asia, just over half of Singaporeans (52%) are unwilling as well - the most likely in this region.

The idea of buying a car on an e-commerce platform has fewer takers than those who seem dismissive of the idea. But with a global average of 15%, and with figures in certain markets going beyond the 33% mark, it seems like Hyundai - and other auto brands which might follow suit - might succeed in intriguing a respectable proportion of consumers to finalize their next car deal on the likes of Amazon.

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. The data is based on surveys of adults aged 18+ years in 17 markets with sample sizes varying between 501 and 2023 for each market. All surveys were conducted online in December 2023. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.


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Auto, Retail