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Gas Mileage A Primary New-Car Consideration, Says J.D. Power

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On: Wed, Feb 15, 2012 at 10:36AM | By: Chris Weiss

Gas Mileage A Primary New-Car Consideration, Says J.D. Power

J.D. Power and Associates 2012 Avoider Study indicates that gas mileage was the biggest factor influencing car buyers' purchasing decisions last year. Fuel economy surpassed such factors as reliability, price and styling in the survey.

The new study is based on responses from more than 24,000 owners who registered a new vehicle in May 2011. JD Power conducted the survey between August and October of last year.

While the study focuses primarily on reasons that consumers avoided particular models and brands, JD Power's press release includes the observation: "The study finds that gas mileage is the most influential reason for purchasing a particular vehicle model in 2012, surpassing the influence of other key reasons such as reliability, the deal and exterior styling, which were the most influential purchase reasons in 2010."

The study finds that vehicles like the Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf and Toyota Prius were effective at capturing consumer attention. They captured attention first and foremost for gas mileage, but respondents were also attracted to the image of the Volt, the perceived low maintenance costs of the Leaf and the reliability of the Prius. On the other end of the spectrum, those that avoided the Volt did so because of price while those that avoided the Leaf and Prius did so because of styling.

It's interesting that the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf were among the top eco-friendly cars in the survey because both vehicles failed to meet expectations in their first year on the market. The Volt in particular struggled to meet sales goals, ending the year with only about 75 percent of GM's planned 10,000 models sold.

Another key finding of the study is that a greater percentage of consumers that avoided a particular model because of quality or reliability concerns did so based on perception and not reviews, experience or ratings. Forty-three percent of such consumers avoided models because of conventional wisdom about the brand; 38 percent relied on reviews and ratings; and 14 percent relied on previous ownership experience. In other words, perception was even more important than reality.



Sami18 | 10:35AM (Thu, Feb 16, 2012)

I think alot of people these days are looking for a car that is great on gas and stylish, the way the economy is now i think it made people realize what was really important.


Stephy21 | 12:51PM (Thu, Feb 16, 2012)

This is going to be a major factor when people start to buy cars now cause the gas prices are going up and the economy hasn't fully been restored so it is a great way to save money in your every day to day life.

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