Cars don bling as NSW drivers loosen purse strings

 

13 November 2013

NSW is bucking the trend of cautionary consumer spending with drivers shelling out close to half a billion dollars on “car bling”, while cutting back on car servicing.

The results from Bingle’s Cost of Motoring: Servicing and Maintenance research reveal of the $4.9 billion spent on the upkeep of cars, NSW drivers forked out nearly $500 million on accessories, an astounding 96 per cent rise compared to the previous year.

Bingle spokeswoman, Marcela Balart, said that was virtually double last year’s spending.

“Over the past 12 months, NSW motorists collectively spent $464 million on ‘car bling’ – more than twice the amount spent in Victoria and five times spent in Queensland,” Ms Balart said.

Over the same period, drivers had reined back on servicing expenses by $51 million to $2.75 billion, however, it still made up 56 per cent of the state’s total servicing and maintenance bill.

“It’s concerning that shopping on items such as car stereos, GPS devices, steering wheel covers, seat covers, smartphone car fixtures and other decorations, has increased, but investing in basic car servicing has declined.

“The danger is that drivers appear to be splashing out on car accessories at the expense of ensuring their vehicles are properly serviced and in the best state to be on the roads,” Ms Balart added.

The research also shows a shift in the number of times the average driver has their car serviced or mechanically repaired with the majority now servicing their car only once a year, as opposed to twice a year.

“Cars, in general, are a huge expense for consumers with the average driver spending $600 on servicing or mechanical repairs in a year,” Ms Balart said.

Car maintenance costs, including car washes and detailing, increased 23 per cent to $511 million. The amount spent on tyres also increased seven per cent to $939 million.

Other costs included $273 million in the replacement, upgrade or repair of parts, up 13 per cent.

“Considering the average NSW car travels more than 12,800 kilometres in a year*, it’s important to remember the engine and mechanics of your vehicle are far more important to its safety and efficiency, than its aesthetics.

“Regularly checking that your car is well maintained, will not only ensure it remains roadworthy, but will help to reduce motor-related costs in the long-term,” Ms Balart said.

 

Bingle Cost Of Motoring: Year-On-Year NSW Servicing And Maintenance Costs

 

2012

2013

YOY % increase

Servicing

 $2.806 billion

$2.755 billion

-2%

Tyres

 $874 million

$939 million

7%

Car Maintenance

 $415 million

$511 million

23%

Accessories

 $237million

$464 million

96%

Other

 $242 million

$273 million

13%

Total

 $4.575 billion

$4.942 billion

8%

 

How NSW stacks up against other states:

 

 Year-on-year Victorian servicing and maintenance costs

 

2012

2013

YOY % increase

Servicing

$2.150 billion

$2.456 billion

14%

Tyres

$631 million

$498 million

-21%

Car Maintenance

$237 million

$246 million

4%

Accessories

$124 million

$186 million

50%

Other

$290 million

$105 million

-64%

Total

$3.433 billion

$3.491 billion

2%

 

Year-on-year Queensland servicing and maintenance costs

 

2012

2013

YOY %

increase

Servicing

$1.689 billion

$1.801 billion

7%

Tyres

$489 million

$590 million

21%

Car Maintenance

$127 million

$135 million

6%

Accessories

$126 million

$90 million

-29%

Other

$173 million

$112 million

-35%

Total

$2.605 billion

$2.728 billion

5%

 

TOTAL year-on-year servicing and maintenance costs for NSW, Victoria and Queensland

 

2012

2013

YOY% increase

Servicing

$6. 646 billion

$7.011 billion

5%

Tyres

$1. 995 billion

$2. 026 billion

2%

Car Maintenance

$779 million

$893 million

15%

Accessories

$487 million

$741 million

52%

Other

$705 million

$490 million

-30%

Total

$10.612 billion

$11.161 billion

5%

 

For media enquiries or to arrange an interview please contact:

Marcela Balart
Bingle Corporate Affairs Advisor
P: 02 8121 0298
M: 0422 483 371
E: marcela.balart@suncorp.com.au

Notes to the Editor: Bingle’s Cost of Motoring research tracks and measures the ongoing costs faced by drivers. Research agency, Nature, conducted an independent internet survey in 2013 of 1,200 owner drivers from across NSW, Victoria and Queensland.

*Australian Bureau of Statistics, Survey of motor vehicle use (9208.0), June 2012