Understanding style, safety, durability, and price are all part of the car-buying process, but for the first time in a while Americans say that fuel efficiency is the most important factor to consider when purchasing a new car.
Do you know the most important factors when buying a #car? According to #data from Statista's Global Consumer Survey, at the top of the checklist are fuel efficiency and safety (switching places since 2018).
— Statista (@StatistaCharts) September 12, 2022
With the average price of a gallon of gasoline in America rising above five dollars for the first time in history as late as June 11 of this year, it is logical that fuel efficiency would top this list. Even with gas prices falling to under four dollars in late August, gas prices are a dollar more than they were in August 2021 and two dollars more than August 2020.
CNN Business reported in June of this year that the cost of gas from June 2021 to June 2022 would cost the average household approximately $150 every month. As such, gas consumption is down by 15% in 2022 and more and more Americans are considering hybrid and electric vehicles.
According to the Statista poll, 56% of respondents considered fuel efficiency “especially important” when it came time to purchase a new vehicle. Compare that to the 55% who considered safety to be especially important and the 46% who consider low price to be so.
Consumer Reports states that the average American drives about 12,000 miles each year. If gas prices were to hold at $3.85 and you own a 2017 Honda Odyssey that gets 20 mpg, then it would cost the average American about $2,300 in gas each year.
Compare that number to switching from a car that gets 20 mpg to one that gets 21 and consumers could save $100 per year. On the other hand, moving to a Toyota Prius hybrid that could typically get 45 mpg. In that case, the average consumer in 2022 would pay approximately $1,026 for an annual savings of over $1,200 compared to the minivan.
This year’s poll shows that only 32% of Americans care a lot about design, 38% about the warranty, and only 43% were concerned about the quality of the vehicle. As gas prices continue to rise, the importance of fuel efficiency will rise as well, and hybrids and electric cars may be the norm in the near future.