VW, Toyota and Renault emerge as top consumer choices for car rentals
One foreign company is even a top preference in the U.S.
A new study by online car rental platform DiscoverCars has revealed that tourists who opted for a vehicle rental cited Volkswagen, Toyota and Renault as their top choices worldwide. The research was based on data collected between 2014 and 2020 from 109 countries participating in the project.
The results weren’t globally consistent as the top three automakers held those rankings in around 20 countries. But it was enough for them to retain their podium positions once the rest of the international data was added to the mix.
Volkswagen’s top status was the result of strong support from tourists visiting the Baltic nations, where preference for the automaker’s models like the VW Polo was as high as 68 percent, followed by 51 percent in Latvia. Elsewhere in Europe, visitors to Croatia, Germany, Norway, Poland, Sweden and Serbia picked the VW. Globally, it was the top choice in Colombia and Mexico.
North American customers turn to Toyota
Second-place Toyota surprisingly dominated Canada and the U.S., where visitors weren’t particularly looking for rentals manufactured by the likes of Ford or GM. One particular data item had it that 59 percent of those vacationing in Colorado preferred to drive a Toyota, with the Yaris subcompact hatchback being the most popular model from that brand. It was also a favorite in the state of Georgia, where tourists mostly opted for the Corolla sedan.
Toyota also comprised the majority of preference to vacationers in Greece, South Africa and Thailand.
Third-place Renault was a top preference in nine countries, including its main base of France. Outside its home turf, Renault’s favorite rental customers were visitors to Belarus, with six out of 10 bookings favoring the French automaker. Renault also had top showings in Egypt and Guadeloupe.
Automakers that didn’t make the top three still dominated other nations, such as Fiat in Brazil, Hyundai in Australia, Nissan in Argentina and Peugeot in Chile.
Survey analysts were surprised that global vacationers who might otherwise want to drive something exotic like a Mercedes or Porsche tended to stick to smaller car models carried by the top three chosen automakers. It turns out that much of those consumer choices had to do with the need to drive a vehicle compact enough to handle foreign roads, especially when getting accustomed to different driving rules and less-recognizable road signs.