Once upon a time, car-buyers looked for new cars based on the size of the trunk, the appointment of the interior and how comfortable the seats were. Gas mileage, while an influencing factor, was way down the list.
That’s changed, according to a Ford-sponsored study into the car-buying decisions of Miami residents.
According to Ford’s study, 32 percent of consumers questioned said they would consider purchasing or leasing a smaller car as their primary vehicle in order to get better gas mileage and fuel efficiency.
In addition, 58 percent of all residents questioned in the survey said they were interested in purchasing a hybrid or electric vehicle once gasoline reached the $5 per gallon mark.
Perhaps more shocking however, is the number of respondents in the survey -- more than half -- who did not know the difference between a hybrid, plug-in hybrid or pure electric vehicle.
Ford’s study helps to reiterate the results of a recent national survey by Maritz Research, which concluded that fuel economy has become the number one purchase consideration for buyers of sub-compact and compact cars during 2011, no doubt driven by increasing gas prices and shrinking disposable income.