Tuesday, February 3, 2009
When I saw Hyundai's Assurance campaign debut in late 2008, I knew Hyundai was going to hit a cord with the current economic climate. Several automakers were throwing more money and more money and yes... you guessed it, more money to entice new auto shoppers. Meanwhile, Hyundai started a program to put consumers at ease by letting them return their new lease within 12 months of purchase if they are laid off (some restrictions apply.)
No surprise auto sales were down significantly in January 2009, but one company shined with a 14.3% gain in a month where most automakers were taking a 30-60% decline in sales. Hyundai was the leader (Kia and Subaru did okay too) and after looking at the sales by model it is clear the sales jump wasn't isolated to the sales of their all new North American Car of the Year Genesis sedan.
The Hyundai Accent, Sonata, and Santa Fe all saw significant jumps in sales year-over-year. Since nothing is really pushing these sales other than Hyundai's Assurance campaign, it is clear this program is getting some great traction for budget minded consumers.
The next question is who will copy Hyundai's lead after seeing their January 2009 surge in a down economy. It definitely proves that saving thousands of dollars is not the impetus automakers expect it to be; it's taking on the elephant in the room - consumer confidence.