Manufacturers run out of luck as buyers set to steer clear of MY13 cars

Updated: 

Manufacturers run out of luck as buyers steer clear of MY13 plate cars

If the AA's Car Purchase Index is anything to go by, manufacturers and dealer networks could face a tough time when the new MY13 registration plate goes on sale later this week.

The AA polled 22,000 potential customers and found that 45% of those asked have "no plans" to purchase a vehicle.

This is the highest number to give new cars the shrug since 2009, when just 25% said that they weren't planning to buy a car in the next two years.

In addition, of those who were planning to purchase a car, just 22% said it was likely to be a brand new one.

It's only those over 65 who are likely to pay out for a new model, with 31% of older buyers opting for that new car smell.

"A car is a purchase decision that is not taken lightly for families who are struggling to juggle their finances," commented Mark Huggins, director of AA Financial Services.

"The growing number of those with no plans to change their car is perhaps a barometer of spending power as well as modern car reliability.

"Families have competing priorities for limited financial resources so if the car's running well, then changing it slips to the bottom of the wish list."

Huggins suggests that this won't be welcome news for the industry, with dealers potentially having to shave profit margins to keep sales coming in.

"I expect a lot of forecourt deals to be offered after the initial rush for the '13' plate, which means those who bide their time could make some decent savings," he said.

Read what industry experts had to say when we quizzed them on superstitious buyers and the perils of the 13-plate.