Is the Large Car Going the Way of the Dinosaur? American Car Preferences Are Changing

In case you haven’t noticed, cars are getting smaller.  Even the ones that were once ultra-long are now more compact.   Except for a few exceptions, even limos are shrinking.   Take a look at models such as the  current Chevy Impala – it’s much smaller than it used to be.  The days of the big “boats” popular in the 60’s and 70’s are fading, for more reasons than just gas mileage.  Thunderbirds, Delta 88s, and Bonnevilles have been replaced by the Chevy Malibu and the Toyota Camry. Families on average have gotten smaller, and those drivers who who formerly would have purchased 9-passenger station wagons and full-size sedans now opt for min-vans to accommodate the needs of their family.  But even the market share for mini-vans is slipping, and 9-passenger wagons are a rarity.  Most models which come in a wagon style seat 4-6. Even though some car companies have recently introduced larger sedans, purchases of those vehicles account for less than 4% of  new car purchases.  The American driving preference is leaning towards smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles.  And hard as it may be to believe, autos such as the Honda Accord – which used to be considered mid-size sedans – are the new “large” cars.  In fact, frequent redesign and technology developments currently concentrate on the mid-size sedan segment. As technology spirals, other factors besides size are coming to represent luxury.  Still, there is a segment of the car-purchasing public that prefers the large vehicle, so don’t expect them to disappear from the horizon any time soon.  Though the choices may be limited, it is anticipated that there will still be some options out there.  For instance, Volkswagen is slated to bring back the full-size Phaeton, which is powered by a whopping 12-cylinder engine, so apparently at least one car manufacturer doesn’t think the days of the big autos are completely over. What about premium luxury cars such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW?  Just like the large-car market, this segment is shrinking as well, now down to less than half a percent of all new-car purchases.  You can expect their offerings to remain pretty much the same. No matter what size car you drive – from a subcompact Mini-Cooper to a Lincoln Town Car, a BWM to a Kia, make sure you’re taking the best care of it inside and out to protect its beautiful appearance and preserve its value.  After all, it seems these days what a car looks and handles like matters much more than its size.    Contact SkipChips today. Not in the Minneapolis metro area?  Schedule SkipChips to come to you.