Given that a car usually constitutes a large, once off purchase, you might be forgiven for believing that car sales in the UK have plummeted. You would be wrong. Sales of vehicles new and used in the UK continue to soar; in November 2012, they exceeded the corresponding month in 2011 by 11.3%, according to The Telegraph. At present, car sales in Britain are at their highest since the onset of the financial crisis some five years ago. According to Citizens Advice, the used car market alone is worth approximately £55 million.
While these figures alone should be reason enough to consider an automotive franchise, a trend resulting from the recession offers even more cause for consideration. The drive for value has impacted upon the British car industry as well. Paradoxically, despite the resurgent sales figures, modern Britons are opting to keep their cars longer, an average of seven and a half years compared to six and a half in 1987 according to Confused.com. In other words, British customers are retaining their present vehicle for increasingly longer periods due to financial pressure curtailing their capacity to replace it at regular intervals.
This also bodes well for numerous automotive franchises. Because of the need to keep their vehicle on the road for longer, upkeep and maintenance have become vital for British motorists. And this is where franchises come in. Examples of companies that can benefit from this longevity of sole vehicle ownership include Revive! (paint repair), Autosmart (vehicle cleaning products), ChipsAway (auto repair) Wheel Wizard and Dent Wizard, all of which are perfectly poised to capitalise on UK car owners feeling the need to keep their vehicle road-worthy for as long as possible and secure maximum usage from their car.
However, the breadth and versatility of the car industry guarantees that numerous other franchises have an opportunity to attain a foothold in this market. The driver hire business has been permeated by Driver Hire and Chauffeur and Private Hire, both franchises occupying a niche within a growing segment of the automotive market. Inextricably linked to increased car sales has been the sustained flourishing of the UK tyre market (the replacement tyre market is set to reach 42 million units by 2017 according to PR Newswire) a segment penetrated by franchises including etyres, Hometyre and Puncturesafe, a tyre-sealant specialist. This is just one example of the many spin-off industries the automotive market affords prospective UK franchisees.