Automotive: Decision drivers of new car buyers

Price often, but not always, the main consideration

Across all four of the major European markets, those looking to buy a car in the next two years are especially likely, compared to the average adult, to have a high, balanced amount of both economic and cultural ‘capital’ – the unconscious psychological backdrop that informs our everyday decisions. This means they tend towards being financially well off with a good level of education and engagement with various cultural practices – something to bear in mind for advertisers hoping to engage them appropriately.

When it comes to the specific choice criteria that are important to new car buyers when making their selection, there are some key variations. In Germany, Spain and Britain price tops the list, but in France comfort and safety are more important considerations. In China, safety is of particular importance, followed by the car brand itself and then the service and repair network.

In the US, price is most important, followed by reliability and then fuel consumption. In Russia, cost factors are especially key, with price the most important, followed by service and repair costs, then fuel consumption. In South Africa, price is also the highest consideration but is closely followed by comfort and the car being fun to drive.

Understanding what makes those who intend to buy a car soon attitudinally different to other consumers who are not is also very revealing for the marketer in informing their campaign. There is certainly a sense across the western European markets of ambition, wanting to stand out and to embrace adventure and change. Agreement with attitudes such as ‘My car should catch peoples’ attention’ and ‘I like taking risks’ is particularly prominent.

Search article

PDF Report

File Size (3.2mb)

Download now


Key global trends in car ownership and purchase intention
Read more
Automotive: Driving and Car Ownership
Read more