Clive Matthew-Wilson, editor of the car review site dogandlemon.com, said it was "a great time" to be a motorist.
Cheap fuel and heavy competition were keeping drivers' costs low and options high.
Consumer NZ chief Sue Chetwin agreed it was a good time to be a car buyer, but said the window of opportunity could end soon.
"Obviously with the New Zealand dollar a bit weaker, car prices probably aren't going to stay as low as they are for too long. But certainly at the moment the market seems very competitive and new car sales, or car sales across the board, are up."
She said other industries, especially tourism and hospitality, would likely benefit from cheaper petrol prices and buoyant car sales.
Ms Chetwin said generally, people travelled further when prices dropped. With the holiday season almost in gear, motels and hotels could enjoy flow-on effects.
The world’s most liveable cities are way ahead of us. Singapore is investing heavily in driverless transport as the way of the future to solve traffic congestion.
Around the world the possible benefits of this technology coming to mass market include increased consumer cost savings (in the form of time saved in congested traffic as well as fuel), decreases in annual death tolls due to human error (which, in the United States alone, amounts to almost 33,000 people every year), increased mobility across demographic and socio-economic lines, and a significant reduction in the total number of cars on the roads (partly fueled by the potential for shifting automobiles from capital investments to service goods – that is, a switch from car ownership to ridesharing autonomous vehicles) to name just a few. Given the many benefits associated with driverless cars, as well as the ongoing successes in overcoming social, technical, and regulatory issues associated with them, it seems likely that these vehicles will be on roadways sooner rather than later.
Solutions are already being developed in certain laboratories (for instance, at the MIT Labs in Singapore), in order to fulfil the needs of old people that are no longer able to drive alone, but need a means of transportation to satisfy their basic needs, like reaching the nearest shop, or going to the nearest hospital for a quick check.
When a hardcore cyclist buys a $7000 pushbike, someone has to making a huge profit somewhere, there is no way a bike can cost that much to manufacture.
That huge profit will get spent on oil consuming luxuries like jet travel to the Maldives.
If you pay $100 to have a TV repaired, you might think you are being nice to the planet, but the repair man will spend that money on food and luxuries which are ultimately by-products of oil. If you instead keep that money in the bank, the profit the bank makes on your investment will get spent on by-products of oil. If you burn the $100, that will release plastic based toxins into the air, and will increase the spending power of the remaining money in the economy, which will in turn consume oil.
Some time ago, I saw Denise Roche buying cigarettes at Woolies, she put them into her re-usable shopping bag, then she zoomed home on her electric push-bike.
The lithium-ion battery would have required huge amounts of energy to manufacture, possibly more than the energy it will ever provide, & will have to be disposed of safely one day. The cigarettes would have released additional CO2 to her breathing. I suspect those re-usable shopping bags have some toxins in the fabric, they feel weirdly greasy on my fingers.
For the moment petrol driven cars will dominate the market because they are cheap, convenient and user friendly. People will switch to alternatives when they provide the same or greater benefits. That is reality of a market driven economy that is an expression of the free will of myriad individuals. Forcing people to do what they don’t want is totalitarian thinking more appropriate to Moscow than modern liveable cities like Singapore. Auckland's transport planners think that they can force people out of cars by reducing road space so they will instead use expensive, inconvenient trains and buses. They won't. The car is still king so here's a suggestion to our transport gurus: start planning for a driverless car future that matches people's real wants and needs.