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New car shortages will trigger a festive rental boom, VW predicts

Volkswagen Financial Services (VWFS) has forecast that the shortage of new vehicles will trigger a festive boom in rental cars for franchise dealers with its rent-a-car service.

The company’s own finance house predicts motorists will turn to car rental in the coming weeks to put newer, bigger, and more reliable vehicles behind the wheel, after Rent-a-Car posted 144% year-over-year growth in November .

Online bookings also skyrocketed, growing more than 220% compared to 2020.

Mark Forton, VWFS Director of Mobility Services, said, “This significant growth in the rental market can be attributed to a number of factors, including the lack of new vehicles, easier booking and a new way of traveling for many people.

“People who may not have a vehicle or who may drive smaller vehicles all year round are renting larger, more reliable vehicles to help fulfill their Christmas plans to visit friends and family – which hopefully differs from last year’s subdued Christmas season.”

VWFS said the shortage of semiconductors, which is limiting the supply of new vehicles to the market, has led many potential car buyers to turn to car rental in the short term.

The European registration data for new cars analyzed by Jato Dynamics has shown that the brands of the Volkswagen Group are severely affected by the current shortage of semiconductors and other components in the manufacturing sector.

Jato said vehicle production issues had a “significant impact” on the overall ranking of top-selling vehicles in November.

Registrations of the Volkswagen Golf and Toyota Yaris fell 72% and 65%, respectively, as the Renault Clio took the lead.

AM reported a YouGov poll last week that suggested that despite reports of motorists abandoning their vehicles during the COVID-19 lockdown, people still want to own their own car.

The mobility survey of 2,400 people, which was carried out on behalf of the technology company Stripe, showed that 63% of people are “not interested” in using joint mobility programs such as ride-hailing or car sharing services.

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