New Zealand’s penchant for pre-owned cars could be holding back the development of technologies for the transportation sector, according to Ministry of Transport briefing papers.
The documents presented to Transport Minister Phil Twyford noted that the transportation system would become modernised, including increased connectivity and automation. Electric vehicles have begun to gain traction as well, with more than 5,800 units on the road by Nov. 30.
The briefing papers highlighted several initiatives that could address certain issues such as road congestion. However, it will be hard to implement them due to more people preferring to buy used vehicles, even if they are often ready to welcome new technologies, according to the documents.
For instance, shared car services will only move forward “if attitudes towards vehicle ownership also change” among Kiwis. The transport ministry aims to solve this problem through incentive programmes, promotional marketing, funding and regulatory changes. In the meantime, the Motor Industry Association (MIA) said that vehicles sales in New Zealand would reach a record high figure in 2017 for the fourth consecutive year.
MIA CEO David Crawford said that a rising number of migrants in the country fuels the growth of car sales, as “more people means more cars.” Vehicle ownership also rose with almost 780 people owning a car per 1,000 Kiwis compared to 740 in 2014, based on data from the transport ministry.
You will save on costs when you decide to buy used cars, although the money you save should be spent on fleet maintenance expenses. More Kiwis, however, have bought new cars since the price difference between brand new and second-hand cars have been smaller in the last 25 years, according to Crawford.
Technology developments in the transportation sector are important, but are you willing to turn your back on used cars to support the modernisation of vehicles?