Loans: Car budgets tighten

Monday, 03 March 2008 12:00

Planned spending on cars for the next six months has fallen to the lowest level in three years, according to new research.

Sainsbury’s Finance car buying index reveals the number of people planning to buy a car has also fallen by nearly one million.

Between March and August some 6.86 million people are intending to buy a car – and expecting to spend £47.5 billion – a fall of £11.1 billion on the last quarter.

On average motorists are planning to spend £6,960 each on their new cars – down from 7,463 over the last quarter.

Steven Baillie, head of loans at Sainsbury’s Finance, said: “It is difficult to pinpoint exactly what is behind this decrease and could be due to a mixture of factors such as concerns around much-publicised economic pressures or environmental anxieties.

“Indeed, our research indicates that the overall cost of motoring, everything from servicing to insurance and fuel has increased by ten per cent in the last three years.”

The largest fall in car buying was recorded in London – down seven percentage points – followed by the south-west (down six percentage points).

However, in the East Midlands car buying plans increased by seven percentage points – with 20 per cent of those polled intending to buy a car.

The biggest automotive spenders are in the south-east – splashing out £13.6 billion on their motors.

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