The unstoppable growth of the SUV
Why do so many people like SUVs? What do these cars have that makes buyers choose them? According to the experts, the answer lies in the evolution of people's needs, and ultimately, cars "have always been a reflection of society", asserts Fundaci6 RACC's technical manager Llufs Puerto.
This same conclusion is expressed by ESADE strategic planning professor Jordi Brunat, who is also an expert in the automotive sector: "cars are an extension of people, of their personality, lifestyle, habits, financial circumstances, social views and how they relate with society". For this reason, the evolution of both society and cars has always gone hand in hand.
During its more than 100-year history, the car has served several functions; first, according to Llufs Puerto, it was a status symbol, a means of transport for the upper echelons of society. Over the years, society has made increasing demands on cars. Regardless of factors such as safety, which is a fundamental concern nowadays, one of the latest current trends is connectivity, "of paramount importance in order to understand the next ten years", assures Puerto. "The services we currently have connected to the mobile that we cannot live without must naturally get integrated in cars, and this is precisely what is happening", he adds.
Over the years, the car industry has adapted to the changing developments of society. We are now living in an era of the compact SUV, a segment that is gaining ground due to "its ability to respond to the needs of an entire family, in addition to the possibility it offers for long-distance city as well as inter-city travel", in the view of the RACC expert.
SEAT is making headway in this segment in response to this opportunity, and will be launching its first compact SUV in the middle of the year, "the ideal moment", says Arantxa Alonso, who works in SEAT's Product Marketing department. ''With the formula Leon we have demonstrated that we are a mature brand with the ability to make cars that stand out for their technology and quality", enabling the company to increase and consolidate sales by entering new segments, such as the compact SUV.