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Consumer fears over car ownership revealed

Most Europeans remain committed to car ownership, but have growing concerns about traffic congestion, the cost of driving and the environment.

Ford sponsored a poll conducted by “The Futures Company,” to better understand the opinions and attitudes of Europeans across a range of mobility issues – from car sharing to green driving to the future of the internal combustion engine.

The survey was carried out between July and August this year with 6,028 people questioned across six European countries; Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK.

The Ford survey showed the majority of people say life would be “impossible” without a car; however 76% of Europeans say they are affected by stress from traffic congestion and fuel prices. The survey shows 74% use public transport, 37% share cars when making the same journey and 3% use formal car sharing schemes.

Other key findings of the survey:

74%per cent identify car ownership with independence
52% use public transport less than once a month or never
53% say climate change was world’s biggest problem
77% would not cut car usage to help tackle environmental issues
72% say fuel efficiency is one of the areas they consider most when buying a car
50% would use a more environmental driving style if they better understood the financial benefit
57% say elected bodies bear most responsibility for reducing transport impact on the environment

Of those surveyed, 28% say they would consider buying a vehicle with an electrified powertrain; though few have first-hand experience of such vehicles (8% have owned or driven a hybrid electric vehicle and 6% have owned or driven a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle or pure battery electric vehicle). By comparison 66% of those polled have owned a petrol engine vehicle and 38% have owned a diesel engine vehicle.

The number of cars on the world’s roads is projected to rise from about 1 billion today between 2 billion and 4 billion by 2050. The European Commission foresees that congestion costs in Europe will rise by 50% to €200 billion per year in the same time frame.

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  • Annie Milner - 14/11/2012 18:11

    So dealers need to focus more intently on the total cost of ownership to satisfy the anxieties of car owners. Modern drivers want to understand what their ongoing monthly budget looks like associated with car ownership rather than the upfront costs. Can dealers show potential customers the potential savings of getting into a newer car with regards to monthly budget?

  • Nobby123 - 03/12/2012 12:02