New data seems to confirm that hybrid cars are here to stay. According to a new poll by Harris Interactive research firm, one-third of car owners express an interest in purchasing a hybrid vehicle. Also, 23 percent of respondents say that their interest in hybrid car ownership has increased from a year ago.
This spike in interest is especially prevalent among young drivers, as 32 percent of those under 35 reveal that they are more interested in hybrids from a year ago. This is different from aged 67+ respondents, of which 15 percent express increased interest while 11 percent say they are actually less interested in hybrids than before.
According to the poll, 11 percent of drivers would now consider a diesel car for their next purchase. And despite very slow sales of pure-electric cars, a surprising 9 percent say they would consider going all-electric for their next car. When choosing vehicles that run on alternative sources of energy, consumers are primarily interested in saving money, the survey shows. Still, one-quarter of respondents who express an interest in hybrids report that environmental concerns are a primary factor. Others (18 percent) are looking to help the U.S. reduce its dependency on foreign oil.
“This survey shows that automakers are starting to win over consumer confidence in hybrid vehicles, especially with younger drivers,” said Mike Chadsey, a vice president and automotive solutions consultant for Harris Interactive. “While this appears to be driven in large part by personal economic needs to reduce fuel expenses, automakers seem to be making a strong case for the performance and reliability of hybrid vehicles compared to traditional options.”
While the market now seems much more receptive to hybrid and other alternative-fuel vehicles, it will still be a challenge for automakers to get some consumers to make the switch. According to the Harris survey, 59 percent of respondents intend to buy a traditional gas-powered car for their next vehicle.
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