Survey: Most U.S. Car Buyers Want Domestic Brands

September 2, 2009
GM Renaissance Center American flag

GM Renaissance Center American flag

Market share of the Detroit 3 has been deteriorating in the U.S. for years, dipping below the 50% mark for the first time in late 2007 and continuing the slide despite the best efforts of the government. Last month, the Detroit 3 only accounted for 43.9% of the passenger vehicle market, while Asian brands accounted for 48% and European brands roughly 7.5%.

The Detroit 3 may see a turnaround in this trend, however, as a new survey suggests that most Americans still want to buy their cars from an American brand.

According to the latest survey run by Consumer Reports, close to twice as many Americans would likely consider a Detroit 3 brand compared to those that would consider an Asian or European brand. The survey found that 81% of new car buyers said they were likely to consider an American brand for their next vehicle compared with 47% who said they would consider Asian brands and 46% who would consider European brands.

Disheartening for the Detroit 3, the results show that while most new car buyers want to buy American, for whatever reason, mostly quality and appeal problems, many are being turned off. The recent bankruptcies of General Motors and Chrysler also proved to be a factor turning off potential customers.

In terms of what attributes were most sort after in new cars, fuel economy topped the list, followed by quality, safety, price and value.

The survey was conducted between July 30 and August 3 and included the responses of 1,777 adults whose families own vehicles.


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