Data shows rising interest in subcompact SUVs, CUVs

SAN FRANCISCO - 

If an “up” walked into your showroom or went by your dealership website searching for a subcompact model, new information from Jumpstart Automotive Media shows there’s a good chance that shopper was looking for the smallest versions of a CUV or SUV.

This week, Jumpstart Automotive Media released its monthly share of shopper interest data, which indicated subcompact SUVs and CUVs saw a 37-percent increase in interest across Jumpstart’s portfolio of sites in the first half of this year when compared to the first half of 2016.

Additionally, Jumpstart noticed the subcompact SUV/CUV segment ranked as the 11th most-shopped vehicle category in the first half of this year, jumping from 22nd.

“No other vehicle segment saw that much of a lift in this timeframe,” Jumpstart said.

Consumers researching and shopping for models such as the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3, and the newly launched Toyota C-HR (a top 10 most-shopped model on Jumpstart sites during June) drove much of this increase.

In addition to the HR-V and C-HR, the Kia Stonic, Hyundai Kona, Ford’s upcoming Eco Sport, which join already established models such as the Kia Soul, are among the “hottest vehicles of today and tomorrow,” according to Jumpstart.

The latest report also mentioned Toyota, Kia, and Tesla were the top brands shopped on Jumpstart sites during the first half of 2017. Toyota increased its brand share to 7.1 percent, (up 15 percent year-over-year) on the strength of the Camry/C-HR and its Hybrid models.

The Toyota Camry (up 56 percent), Camry Hybrid (up 84 percent), Highlander Hybrid (up 65 percent) and C-HR (up 728 percent) all saw significant gains versus the first half of 2016.

Kia raised its brand share to 3.1 percent, representing a 36-percent lift, stemming primarily from its new 2017 hybrid subcompact SUV Niro (launched in 2017), future model Stinger (that was revealed to public during this year’s auto shows), a redesigned Rio and shopper interest in the Soul and Sorento models.

While it still holds an overall small percentage of shopper interest across Jumpstart sites, analysts noted Tesla grew its brand share to 1.0 percent, marking a 122-percent spike with the Model X driving much of this growth (up 224 percent).

“New and redesigned models will often win the attention of car and truck shoppers, especially when new styles, features and performance are highlighted,” said Libby Murad-Patel, vice president marketing and strategic insights at Jumpstart.

“That being said, we’re keeping a close eye on the subcompact utility space, which offers a unique blend of versatility, comfort, value and functionality that appeals to a wide range of consumers,” Murad-Patel continued.

Other key shopping trends from the first half of 2017 included:

• Honda CR-V was the third most-shopped vehicle during the first half of 2017 after Ford F-150 and Ford Mustang.

• Toyota Camry (redesign) share grew 56 percent from Q1 2016, making it one of the top 10 most-shopped vehicles during the first half of this year.

• Ford Expedition (redesign) share rose 70 percent from Q1 2016, making it one of the top 25 most-shopped vehicles during the first half of this year.

• BMW 5-Series (redesign) share climbed 83 percent from Q1 2016, making it one of the top 75 most-shopped vehicles during the first half of this year.

• In June, launch vehicles Toyota C-HR and Volkswagen Atlas had the best months for share of interest. The C-HR cracked the top 10 most-shopped models, with a month-over-month interest growth of 179 percent. Atlas rose to the top 25 most-shopped models, with a month-over-month interest growth of 50 percent.


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