Dataium ASI Shows Increased Shopper Interest in Family-Friendly Compact SUVs

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Honda CR-V and compact SUVs take the spotlight while other segments lose consumer interest.

Dataium
Manufacturer incentives and attractive lease rates make this March the best time to upgrade the family car, and compact SUVs offer the safest compromise between fuel economy and practical family-oriented utility.

Dataium, the largest aggregator of in-market automotive shopper behavior, today released its monthly Automotive Shopper Intensity (ASI™) report. The ASI index, a leading predictive indicator of automotive retail sales, fell a quarter of a percentage point in February after months of national fiscal debates and economic uncertainty. Based on this, Dataium forecasts the US Retail SAAR in March to be 12.3 million retail units.

Early in February, Dataium forecasted Chevrolet and Ford would lead a major surge in consumer interest for pickup trucks, and the US Retail SAAR would be 12.5 million retail units based on consumer behavior. Sales figures from the end of the month proved Dataium's forecasts to be correct.

Automotive shopping intensity around SUVs is at a 12-month high in March, rising significantly while most other segments show losses in consumer activity. Upward SUV trends, coupled with falling unemployment and housing sector increases, suggest more consumers are seeking the stability and practicality of all-purpose family vehicles.

Competition between Honda, Acura, Mazda and Toyota SUVs bumped four domestic vehicles out of the ASI top ten rankings. The Honda CR-V topped both the ASI top ten rankings and the SUV segment with impressive gains in shopper interest. The Acura ILX gained traction as well, but not enough to nudge the BMW 3 series from its high February position. The Toyota Camry has struggled since November to compete with the redesigned 2013 Honda Accord, and the ASI gap grew slightly in Accord's favor this month.

Honda and Acura’s high auto shopper intensity may be aided by numerous safety and top choice awards, as well as unique incentives announced in late February. For example, American Honda offered home solar panel installation incentives in 14 states through March.

Eric Brown, CEO of Dataium, said, "It's no wonder sedans and compact SUVs are getting more attention. Consumers are worn out by economic troubles and want to do what’s best for their family. Manufacturer incentives and attractive lease rates make this March the best time to upgrade the family car, and compact SUVs offer the safest compromise between fuel economy and practical family-oriented utility."

Dataium provides data and research on auto shopper/buyer behavior nationally, and by specific makes, models, vehicle segments, and markets. The index has proven to be very accurate in predicting future trends, consumer intent and desire, and promotional media impact on consumer behavior. The national ASI report is available for download at http://www.dataium.com/library. Dataium reports and dashboards are available on a subscription basis or may be customized to access real-time in-market behavior, sales forecasting, advertising effectiveness, inventory alignment, digital marketing performance, and website design proficiency.

To request complete access to Dataium's ASI predictive modeling tool on future consumer demand by make, model, trim level, segment, region, and market, contact Dataium at http://www.dataium.com/contact.

About Dataium, LLC
Dataium is the largest aggregator of in-market automotive shopping activity. With its Cloud Intelligence® platform, the company collects, analyzes, and indexes billions of online automotive shopping events from over 20 million active auto shoppers monthly. The company supports cutting-edge data collection and reporting technology; VisiCogn® Knowledge Center, and is also known for its ASI™ index and ASI™ Awards. For more information, visit http://www.dataium.com, email: info(at)dataium(at)com, or call 877-896-DATA (3282).

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Tarynne Rodney
Dataium
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