Despite a slowdown in SUV sales over the past several years as a result of higher gas prices, 21 percent of consumers who plan to buy a car in 2007 intend to purchase an SUV or crossover vehicle, according to a recent Cars.com survey.
Roughly 24 percent of survey respondents said they will buy a new or used car this year, and no body style was more popular than SUVs and crossovers. Next were small sedans, at more than 19 percent; large sedans, 11 percent; compact cars, 8 percent; pickup trucks, 7 percent; and hybrid cars, 6 percent. A large portion of consumers — 28 percent — remain undecided as to what type of car they will buy.
“Manufacturers are doing a good job of making SUVs and crossover vehicles more fuel-efficient, which will be more attractive to consumers,” said Patrick Olsen, managing editor of Cars.com. “However, high gas prices will still be a deciding factor for many undecided shoppers, especially if prices climb again as they typically do in the summer months.”
Fuel-efficiency was the second most important factor for shoppers when it came to choosing a car, behind price. Fuel-efficiency was followed by safety, size and body style in order of importance to consumers.
The survey was conducted online for Cars.com by Impulse Research Inc., with a random sample of 1,011 men and women representing a cross-section of the U.S. population. The overall sampling error for this survey is plus or minus 3% at a 95% level of confidence.
Cars.com is the most comprehensive destination for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site lists more than 2 million vehicles from 13,000 dealer customers, classified advertisers and private parties to offer consumers the best selection of new and used cars online, as well as the content, tools and advice to support their shopping experience. Recently selected by Forbes.com as a Best of the Web site for car shopping, Cars.com combines powerful inventory search tools and new-car configuration with pricing information, photo galleries, buying guides, side-by-side comparison tools, original editorial content and reviews to help millions of car shoppers connect with sellers each month.