While reliability is becoming an increasingly important factor among car buyers, fuel economy is slowly falling as a priority. It’s interesting that buyers are doing less window shopping these days, and with an abundance of online resources, reviews, and tests, an average buyer usually chooses between three different models. Here are some of the reasons people choose specific cars.
According to a survey, 30% of people said their key consideration when choosing a vehicle is the availability of a 4-wheel or an all-wheel-drive system. However, it’s important to consider that such results are common in brutal winters or seasons of heavy rains when heavily populated parts are getting repeatedly buried in deep snow or experience landslides, floods, and less than ideal driving conditions.
The fuel prices are still considerably low, and modern cars have better gas mileage than ever. Intelligent aerodynamic design, advanced fuel-saving tech like start-stop and cylinder activation, increased number of transmission speeds, as well as light vehicle chassis have made huge strides towards better fuel economy. And then there are hybrids, plug-ins, and electric vehicles which are competing for their share of the market. As long as the fuel prices remain stable, the percentage of buyers who cite fuel economy as their top concern will remain low as well.
These days you may hear that car companies no longer make bad cars. While a definition of a bad car is open to interpretation, it’s hard to believe bad cars no longer exist. Surely, most new cars seem well made, assembled with minimal tolerances, and made with decent materials. While there are exceptions, as always, the general improvement of workmanship has become a norm, and only about 34% of people consider it when buying a new car.
Versatility has become an aspect of a vehicle that is worth checking out. A versatile vehicle can be configured so it can carry a large number of people or extra cargo, depending on the need. In their stock form, modern pickup trucks are the most versatile adventure vehicles today. While still huge by passenger car standards, modern technology has brought their economy and handling to levels on par with mid-range crossovers. The massive number of sales in this segment, as well as the intense competition, keeps the available choice of trucks for sale updated with new attractive models each year. Four-door cabins offer more passenger space than even the biggest of saloons, which makes them ideal for carrying up to five adults with all their gear on long road trips, not to mention the boat or trailer towing capabilities.
Over the course of the past decade, cars have made significant advancements in terms of safety. More rigorous testing by the government agencies and insurance institutes, advanced driver assistance, and collision avoidance systems, have contributed to a driver’s ability to avoid an accident, while the chances for the occupants’ survival have increased multiple-fold. With such improvements in the safety department, it doesn’t surprise that only 37% of car buyers consider safety as a prime factor when selecting a new car. it’s important to note, however, that smaller and lighter vehicles are less effective than larger and heavier ones when it comes to a collision.
Ride and handling
With most people driving their cars every day, it’s important how a vehicle accelerates, stops, how it handles turns, and rides. The inability to get up to highway speed, to stop quickly and safely in an emergency, or to take evasive action, or to enjoy a drive when riding over a road ridden with potholes and cracks will make the vehicle less satisfactory in the eyes of a buyer. However, today, elements of driving dynamics go further than the factors mentioned above and include how a vehicle is easy to park or how easy it is to judge distance and see around.
Given that vehicle reliability is cited by half of all the car buyers, it’s no surprise that Consumer Reports is the most frequently consulted publication for new car shoppers. However, before you make your mind based on the number of red, clear, or black dots given to a certain model, keep in mind that vehicle reliability doesn’t mean the same today what it meant yesterday. If you’re looking for a dependable vehicle skip the bad ratings related to design and technology and focus on individual ratings related to mechanical performance.
As the automotive industry is issuing increasingly technologically advanced vehicles in order to come on top of the vast competition, features like safety, workmanship quality and fuel economy are taken for granted, while car buyers are more interested in individual design traits such as handling experience, and reliability over the years.