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FULL ARTICLE | EDITORIAL 
The SUV Show - Whatís next? 
Peter Schmidt | Editor

Published: Fri, 16th March 2018 17:00:18 GMT
 

SUV Crossover Show, is there an end to the steep rise is sight

"SUV-Crossovers, first spotted by fashion A-listers as the type of vehicle to be seen in, remain ever so cool. Itís not a localised buying trend. Instead, this trend is now echoed in near equal measure between L.A. to London and Beijing to Bombay. Even more startling to even grey-haired members of the automotive observer league is the longevity of this planet-wide phenomenon. Also, it is the first ever truly global automotive fashion trend. No surprise then, this trend has turned into an all-round winning streak for all those producing the right products. 

There are no two ways about it, the term fashion and change are intrinsically linked. 

In consequence, we have spring, summer and winter collections of clothing, simply because the ultimate sale of these fashionable dresses is the prime essential ingredient to keep tills ringing. 

Thatís both for the design houses and their internet or high-street outlets. 

Frequent change is the operative word. 

Itís hardly surprising that this key constituent part of fashion has also become an integral part of the automotive world. 

Essentially kicked off in the US as the annual model-year change, more often than not these facelifts are little more than minor cosmetic changes which cost little money and do little to rectify genuine shortcomings. 

But apart from that, the autoindustry is also slave to notably more significant automotive buying fashion. 

Not so very long ago family-size People-Carriers were all the rage in Europeís car market. 

Well before then and in some markets more than in others, classical estate cars rather than three-box saloons were the norm in Europeís market for mid-range and larger cars. 

Moreover, whereas Europeís new car buyers were favouring Golf-class hatchbacks, US and Chinese new car buyers would instead favour the same size car styled as a classical three-box car. 

That said, and more so in Japan and Europe, just focusing on the past two decades, automotive fashion has changed a great deal. 

The time when high-fashion meant wind-in-the-hair motoring for all but a few specialist automotive segments, and trendy People-Carriers were so trendy that even childless couples were driving them gave way to a fundamental change. 

Today itís SUV-Crossovers. When it arrived in Europe in 2007, Nissanís innovative and affordable Qashqai, turned the market on its head. It remained a buyer-favourite ever since. 

Never before, it seems, has a major segment-shaping automotive fashion craze lasted as long as this one. In Europe at least, following on the coat-tails of North-America, the most notable car buying trend has now been expanding for more than a decade. 

Even more astonishing, and contrary to most car fashion trends before it, there are no signs of a slowdown. 

Instead, when judged from recent numbers, the SUV-Crossover sector is still gaining added momentum.

Behind shielded corporate walls, few visionaries expect a continuation of the kind of strong SUV-Crossover demand that is still seen today in the US, Europe and China in particular. 

To no oneís surprise, there is no doubt that a major trend change will happen. 

And yet, the question foremost on thinkersí minds is probably not so much when, but equally poignant: whatís next? 
 

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