Shoppers Seriously Considering
More Fuel-Efficient Vehicles
Due to Gas Prices
Fifty-nine percent of U.S.
in-market vehicle shoppers say that gas prices have
either changed their minds or strongly influenced purchase
decisions, according to the August 2005 AutoVIBES, a
monthly automotive study from Harris Interactive® and Kelley Blue Book Marketing Research tracking consumer
automotive buying intentions. This is an increase of
13 percentage points since last month and an all-time
high since AutoVIBES began tracking the effect of gas
prices on vehicle choice in April 2004.
In addition, 42 percent of vehicle shoppers indicate
that they would seriously consider a more fuel-efficient
vehicle if gas prices were to increase an additional
$0.25 above the current national average (which was
$2.61 per gallon on August 26, 2005). This is an increase
of 12 percentage points since last month and an all-time
high since tracking began in April 2004.
"With prices for gas now skyrocketing above the
psychological threshold of $3 per gallon in many areas,
consumers are more interested in fuel-efficient cars
than at any time in the last two decades," said
Jack R. Nerad, editorial director and executive market
analyst for Kelley Blue Book. "Pump prices are
not only pinching the pockets of today's SUV owners,
but future owners as well, as we are seeing three and
five year residual values on new SUVs begin to fall."
AutoVIBES is a monthly omnibus survey of approximately
2,000 U.S. adults ages 18 and over who plan to purchase
or lease a new vehicle within the next 12 months. This
survey was conducted August 26 - 29 on Kelley Blue Book's
Web site (www.kbb.com), the most visited Web site among
in-market vehicle buyers. The study was designed and
analyzed jointly by Harris Interactive and Kelley Blue
Book Marketing Research.
The data was weighted by demographics and propensity
to reflect the general U.S. adult population of in-market
vehicle buyers. Though this online sample is not a probability
sample, in theory, with probability samples of this
size, one could say with 95 percent certainty that the
results have a sampling error of plus or minus three
percentage points of what they would be if the entire
U.S. adult population who plan to purchase or lease
a new vehicle within the next 12 months had been polled
with complete accuracy.
For more information about this study,
please contact Kelley Blue Book Marketing Research at
949-268-3074 or Harris Interactive at 877-919-4765.