Jaguar Land Rover, Honda and Skoda are the manufacturers which will be hot this year, says industry expert Glass’s.
In a new car market that is getting ever more competitive, these are the manufacturers who are successfully outshining the competition in terms of product quality, running costs and sheer consumer appeal, said head of valuations Rupert Pontin.
Pontin said: "Sometimes, everything comes together for a car maker and they find themselves with not just an excellent range of cars but a kind of aura to almost everything they do. These are the brands that discerning private and fleet motorists want to drive and switched on traders want to buy and sell.
"One of the things about being an 'it' brand though is that sustaining that position is extremely tough and it will be very interesting to see where these brands are in market terms in another year."
Rupert's rundown of the ‘it’ brands:
1. Jaguar Land Rover - "Great products, great image and very much the cars to be seen driving, with a marked level of distinction matching the well-known German prestige brands. The arrival of the Jaguar XE especially will make a huge difference to the way that the public and trade perceives them, and cement their place as a mainstream premium competitor."
2. Honda - "Honda are set for a complete reinvention in 2015 and a return to their position as one of the most innovative and desirable of the Japanese mainstream manufacturers. There is a complete new model range coming this year which we believe will take them to a new place in the UK market. The watchwords here are relevance, cost effectiveness and competitiveness."
3. Skoda - "There are now several fantastic Skoda products that are drawing considerable interest from all areas of the market. The brand has now built for itself an almost unique market position - something that you might call value premium. You get nearly all of the quality of a Volkswagen or an Audi at a fraction of the cost. This is very much the thinking person's choice."
At the other end of the scale, Rupert said that there were a number of brands that were rapidly losing their appeal in the eyes of private buyers, traders and fleets.
"The biggest dangers are mediocre product or a tendency to chase market share, eroding some of the exclusivity around your brand in the process. There are several manufacturers who are contending with at least one of these problems at the moment," Pontin said.