Ford Galaxy is a seven-seater luxury large Multi-Purpose Vehicle (MPV) developed jointly by Ford and Volkswagen and was first introduced in 1995. During the Frankfurt Motor Show held last September 2005, the latest Ford Galaxy model was unveiled. It will be available in the market in the middle of 2006.
In the Motor Industry Facts 2006 published by SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Ltd.), total car registration in UK reached 2.4 million as of 2005. In table 1 below, Lower Medium segment remains to be the most dominant car type in the industry owning 31.2% of the market. Ford Focus, Vauxhall Astra, and Renault Megane are among the products included in this category. However, total car registration was down by 5% compared to 2004. Major factors attributed to such decline were lower consumer spending, increasing interest rates, and intense competition in the industry.
Very evident in the last three years in the industry was the shift of consumer preferences in terms of car type. Share of Superminis like Corsa, Fiesta, and 206 went down by 3.9% while its alternative Lower Medium increased market share by 2.8%. Furthermore, SUVs or Dual Purpose 4x4s and MPVs increased share in the industry
New car registrations can be classified as non-private (fleet and business) and private. An estimated of about 44.1% of total car registrations were categorised as private vehicles. ...
In terms of non-private, 49% were contributed by business segment and the remaining 7.3% for fleet.
MPV's or minivans are slowly gaining popularity in the industry resulting to a 3-year compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.6% against total industry CAGR of -1.6%. However, total MPV declined by 8% which is somewhat similar to the situation of the total car industry.
MPVs are also known as people carrier, multi-utility vehicle, or to some extent as minivan. A typical MPV can seat 7 people or more, relatively higher than normal sedans, and can be characterised as a family car. It is further segmented in three major categories - mini-MPV (e.g. Hyundai Matrix), compact MPV (e.g. Vauxhall Zafira), and large MPV (e.g. Ford Galaxy) depending on its body size and seating capacity.
In the survey involving 3,000 new car buyers conducted by Vauxhall Motors last 2003, reliability turned out to be the most important consideration affecting car purchase. Price which was the primary consideration in year 2002 fell to 4th position. Comfort, fuel economy, price, exterior size and space in vehicle are other leading considerations influencing car purchase in UK.
Car registration forecast in 2006 is still negatively skewed according to SMMT. Expected new car registrations will be around 2.375 million or -2.7% compared to actual car registration in 2005. Weak economic forecast which is directly related to weakening consumer spending is considered as one of the significant deterrents in 2006. Conversely, diesel demand is predicted to increase in the coming years.
General target buyers for MPV are young families with children age 6 to 11 years old who want better fuel economic savings. The growing fierce