Saturday, August 11, 2012

Car changes vs model longevity

Model Longevity... once, there was a time when the car was built year after year, decade after decade with minor changes but no new model... it is commonly known as the model T

The Ford Model T was made for 19 years, 1908 to 1927

The Model T was so popular, it wasn't even advertised between 1917 to 1923

In 1914 more Model Ts were made than all other car makes, combined.

Anyway, changes to the model meant not creating, designing, and engineering all new parts and methods to produce parts for a new design

The Corvette in 1976 had a lot of surveys to see what was going on with it's buyers, and some interesting things learned was that the average age of a Corvette buyer was 10 years younger than the average age of new car buyers in general

The Corvette buyers were 90% men, 57% were married vs general car buyers that are 80% married.

Most important to car makers is the repeat purchase rate... will a buyer sell the old Corvette, and buy a new one, but less than 20% did.. and that ties into the long model longevity. When the new year bring a new car that looks and performs the same, why sell your old one and buy a new one, with bigger car payments and higher insurance costs? Repeat purchase rate was low,  and GM decided to reduce the cycle years to give a reason to buy a new car.

So instead of the cycle between the 53, 62, 67 and 83 C1, C2, C3, and C4 generations, the C5 and C6 have been brought to a 6 or 7 year cycle

After all, it was GM that is lilkely to get the credit for encouraging new car purchases by changing design features with every model year, and incorporating planned obsolescence through shorter warranties " definition, planned obsolescence was "Instilling in the buyer the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary.""

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