Survey: Toyota’s Recalls Drive Shoppers to Ford, Hyundai

(The Wall Street Journal) – The accumulation of Toyota’s recalls, which deepened Wednesday to include the the seemingly unlikely 2003 Sequoia SUV, is driving buyers to rivals like Ford and Hyundai, The Wall Street Journal’s Driver’s Seat blog reported Thursday.

People who were planning to buy a car in a year or so “have pushed Toyota way down on their consideration lists,” says Art Spinella of CNW Research in Bandon, Ore. According to his survey data, 17 percent of these so-called long-range intenders have Toyota among their top three choices, down from 27 percent a year ago. In the same period Hyundai rose to 12 percent from 11 percent and arch rival Ford jumped to 26 percent from 17 percent.

Ford is also the first choice of people who had previously considered a Toyota, and Hyundai is second. “These competitors are filling the void,” Spinella says. Short-term buyers and longtime Toyota owners are another story, though. Shoppers planning to buy soon are still buying Toyotas in part because dealers are piling on discounts and other incentives — a tactic Toyota used to avoid. The Toyota faithful are largely sticking with the brand, he says.

In the used car market, Toyotas are losing the resale value advantage they have long enjoyed. A year ago used Toyotas were typically fetching 97 percent of the asking price, compared with Ford at 90 percent. Today Toyota is at 90 percent and Ford is at 97 percent, according to CNW.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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