Survey: Where Will Millennials Take the Car Industry?

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Aug. 23, 2017—In what direction is the automobile industry headed next?

To find the answer, LendEDU conducted a poll of car-owning millennials in which the company asked them a series of questions related to their car habits. While the study covers a wide spectrum of topics, perhaps the most enlightening for auto care shops comes when the survey explores how millennials handle the costs of owning a car.

"When you purchase an automobile, you can expect two expenses to stay with you for the duration of owning that car: maintenance costs and insurance costs," the study stated. "We asked car-owning millennials, 'Which of the following best describes your feeling after purchasing a car?' 39.12 percent of respondents were surprised by the maintenance costs, while 60.88 percent stated that they were not surprised.

"Maintenance costs can rack up quite a hefty bill, so it is encouraging that a comfortable majority of millennials were ready for it."

Also of note is the popularity of ride-sharing services, which the survey states that growing market "may be having a moderate influence on the car industry."

When asked if the growth in ride-sharing services like Uber have made our respondents re-think car ownership, 16.57 percent of car-owning millennials said "yes." Although the clear minority, 16.57 percent of millennials re-thinking car-ownership due to the rise of Uber and Lyft is a cohort that did not exist just a few years ago and is nothing to scoff at.

On the subject of the cars of the future, the study asked: "If possible, would you give up manually driving a car if it meant that you could have a self-driving car?"  

Around 57 percent of car-owning millennials said they could not give up manually driving a car, while 42.51 percent said they would. The results of this particular question were a lot tighter than anticipated and demonstrate the openness many millennials have towards self-driving cars—an openness that is not as prevalent with older American consumers.  

When it came to "green" or hybrid cars, more car-owning millennials were in favor of purchasing an environmentally-friendly car. The simple majority of respondents, 50.10 percent, said they would prefer owning a "green" or hybrid car over a traditional car, while 49.90 percent would opt for a traditional car. Similar to the question pertaining to self-driving cars, millennials are clearly much more ready for the cars of the future. 


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