The trend to change a domestic car to an import car seems to be spreading steadily. New registrations of import passenger car increased 36.7% in November this year over the same period of the previous year, scoring an increase three months in a row. This is partly because consumers are somewhat weary of austerity life, but the strenuous efforts of import car dealers to market import small cars to the young generation with an emphasis on yen’s appreciation are working very well. A man in his twenties claims that an import car with excellent and fancy design interests him in view of the small difference is price between a domestic car and an import car.
Yanase, Japan’s leading import car dealer, analyzes that consumers who decided against buying a replacement after the Lehman Shock have started shopping around. In fact, the company sold four times more Mercedes-Benz open car SLKs, each of which is priced between 5,500,000 and 7,500,000 yen, this year over the previous year. It feels the growing popularity of cars with tasteful design that cannot be sold easily in tight economic times. In a sense, it can be said that domestic cars place too much emphasis on economic potential. As always, rich people exist however depressed and stagnant national economy becomes.