Sedans Aren't a Dying Breed in a Few Areas of the U.S.
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In recent years, SUVs have become more popular overall than sedans, which are being discontinued by many manufacturers.
In fact, SUVs surpassed sedans as the best-selling body style in 2014, and as of last year, SUVs have grown to 52% of the industry, according to IHS Markit.
Still, more than 2 million sedans were sold in the U.S. last year. Even as the popularity of SUVs grows, passenger cars still hold 25% of the industry, and sedans themselves 18%. In particular areas of the country, people are still choosing sedans over SUVs when buying a new car.
The market for sedans
Sedans are more popular than you might think in some key areas | Twenty20
Even though it may seem consumers are choosing SUVs over sedans, more data from IHS Markit reveals why automakers shouldn’t completely ignore the sedan market just yet.
Last year, the national average for sedan loyalty was 41.9% — which doesn’t seem too impressive, especially considering it’s under 50%.
However, average sedan loyalty increases to 45.3% when you look at the top 25 domesticated market areas by volume.
Looking even further, eight designated market areas had sedan loyalty that exceeded the national average. These designated market areas include New York and Los Angeles, the top two designated market areas by volume, and four designated market areas in Florida.
New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Palm Beach actually have sedan loyalty exceeding 50%.
Why sedans are still popular
A reason that SUVs have grown in popularity recently is that fuel prices have been sustained in recent years, meaning that the fuel savings of a sedan are not always a prioritized feature anymore, according to Car and Driver. In addition, many consumers opt for SUVs over sedans for space, capability and visibility.
But as the data shows, there’s still a market and need for sedans, even as several automakers invest more in SUV production.
Safety has always been an added advantage of a sedan. It’s true that today, SUVs are being equipped with more safety features, but sedans still have some advantages in this area. For example, storing your valuables in a closed trunk of a sedan is probably safer than storing them in a SUV’s open cargo space — from both a visibility and a safety standpoint.
Another reason there’s still a market for sedans is their drivability. Some consumers find sedans easier to drive since they aren’t top heavy. Parking and maneuvering through sharp corners also tends to be easier.
Even if fuel prices are lower, some drivers still opt for a sedan because of the fuel economy. Most sedans come with a four-cylinder, which are more fuel-efficient than the V-6 or V-8 often found on SUVs.
In addition, sedans tend to be a more affordable option to purchase, which is another reason people are still buying them.
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