Australian car market in pole position

Now could be the perfect time for Australian fleet managers to investigate buying new vehicles, according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI).

The FCAI recently commissioned IHS Automotive to compare the Australian car market against two other leading right-hand drive markets from around the world - the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Based on the results of the reports, it seems Australia's competitive car market is leading the way.

FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said there are 67 brands in Australia selling more than 350 models, and this was leading to lower prices and greater quality as manufacturers seek demand.

"Together, our research shows that for the vast majority of the Australian new car market, a model of like specifications is cheaper in Australia than it is in the United Kingdom or New Zealand," he explained.

Mr Weber regarded the post purchase treatment of Australia buyers as particularly appealing against foreign markets. He described the dealer network and the array of features "specifically designed for the Australian landscape and lifestyle" such as GPS mapping, towing capacities and high-temperature air-conditioning systems.

Competitiveness equals collaboration?

In a competitive market, there also tends to be some collaboration between manufacturers to try and get ahead of other brands. In Australia, this is related to fuel consumption, safety, security and environmental features.

Mr Weber said this results in Australian motorists receiving more for considerably less than those in the UK or in NZ.

"This competition means that Australians are getting world-class cars at globally-competitive prices," he said.

Together the FCAI and IHS have complied a full vehicle price and specification comparison on the website that shows potential buyers both local and overseas market prices. It is also important to remember that each country has separate stamp duty, registration fees and other costs that were excluded from the report.