DAB radio in cars on the rise across Europe | radioinfo

DAB radio in cars on the rise across Europe

Thursday 03 November, 2016
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Figures released today show that DAB adoption in the car is growing in key markets across Europe – with over 1.7 million new cars sold with DAB in the first half of 2016 (compared to 2.7 million for the whole of 2015). 

Across eight countries surveyed, 31% of new cars now come with DAB as standard – with all eight markets showing an increase in adoption rates compared to 2015.

Leading the way are the UK, Norway and Switzerland – where the vast majority of new cars now come with DAB as standard:

  • In September, 86% of new cars in the UK came with DAB as standard (up from 35% at the beginning of 2013).
  • In Norway, which will start to switch off FM transmissions in January 2017, at least 78% of new cars had DAB as standard in the first half of 2016 – this figure rises to over 90% when installation by dealers is included.
  • In Switzerland, where digital switchover is planned for 2020-2024, 65% of new cars now come with DAB+ as standard.[2]

The adoption of in-car DAB is picking up pace in other markets – with JATO reporting the fastest growth in the Netherlands and Denmark:

  • In the Netherlands, 23% of new cars had DAB as standard in the first half of 2016 – up from 16% for 2015
  • In Denmark, following a relaxation in tax rules which treated digital radio as a “luxury good”, the proportion of cars fitted with DAB has more than doubled to 11% – up from 5% in 2015.

In Germany, Italy and France, DAB is widely available as either a standard or an option fit:

  • In Germany, DAB radio is available in 80% of new cars – primarily as an option.
  • In Italy, the figure is 54%
  • In France, it is 33%.

Across these eight markets, the top five automotive brands for DAB, ranked by volumes sold, were Ford, Volkswagen, Renault, Opel / Vauxhall, and BMW.

In Australia, the number of new cars on the road fitted with DAB+ broadcast digital radio has tripled in the past year, helping to lift digital radio uptake to 25.3% of the population in the metropolitan capital cities, according to data released by Commercial Radio Australia in March this year.

Patrick Hannon, President, WorldDAB, said: “Across Europe, the number of new cars with DAB is rising strongly – with almost all car manufacturers now offering DAB radio either as standard or as an option.  As the first countries start to switch off their FM signals, it will be increasingly important for car makers to ensure that all vehicles are fitted with DAB as standard.  For motorists, this will mean greater choice, clearer sound and reliability in emergencies.”

Ronny Van Gerwen, Country Manager BELUX at JATO, said: “For the first time we’ve been able to see how DAB integration into the car, whether that is standard or an option, has grown in the last year, split by country and manufacturer across key European markets. Drivers and automotive manufacturers are clearly seeing the benefits of DAB, with factory fit installation rates increasing. In less mature markets or where factory installation is not standard, the integration of DAB as an option is increasing significantly. Interestingly Denmark and Switzerland have seen the largest increases in cars fitted with standard and option fit DAB from 2015.  In Denmark this could be as a result of their neighbour starting digital switchover in 2017 and for both markets the development of plans for switch over.”

Commissioned by WorldDAB and carried out by JATO Dynamics, the research covers new cars sold in Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland and focuses on the number of cars sold with DAB as standard and the number of cars by brand offering DAB as an option. The latest UK research comes from cap hpi for the SMMT and Digital Radio UK.

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