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US Consumers’ Priorities, Preferences, and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Systems and Features, 2016

US Consumers’ Priorities, Preferences, and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Systems and Features, 2018

Declining diesel share gives rise to newer opportunities for electric vehicles. Understanding consumer needs becomes quintessential toward driving future mobility developments. This research focuses on consumer needs and their willingness to pay for various powertrain features and electric vehicles. The respondents were questioned based on numerous factors such as reliability, fuel economy, easy availability of the fuel, good everyday performance, low cost of ownership, good resale value, low noise and vibration, inexpensive to purchase, very low/zero emissions, sporty performance, tax credits, and other incentives such as HOV lane access and to understand which motivates them to consider purchasing a vehicle. An overview on the impact of Volkswagen diesel emission scandal and changing consumer perception of diesels has also been captured.

Key Features
The key takeaways of the study include:
Vehicles are mainly used on city roads and highways. Around half of the drivers do not drive more than 250 miles a day ever.
Although reliability and safety are the most important factors for choosing vehicle, luxury car owners consider performance and personalization of the vehicle more often.
Innovation seekers and selective adopters are more often considering performance aspects when choosing engine.
Fuel economy is a higher priority compared to performance. Females and drivers of small cars and SUVs with gasoline engine are especially keen on achieving good fuel economy.
More than 80% of the drivers are willing to trade in their current vehicle for more fuel-efficient vehicle at fuel price of $5 per gallon.
Next Vehicle Segment - On average, of those who prefer diesel engines, 55% would want an idle start–stop system, while 43% would want cylinder deactivation. These preferences can overlap, with 25% not wanting any of those.

Key Issues Addressed
What are the general purchasing criteria and powertrain attributes that customers in the US consider while buying the car of their choice?
What is the customer interest in considering a diesel-driven car as the next purchase?
How is the customer perception of diesel cars changing?
What is the impact of the Volkswagen emission scandal on such perception?
What is the consumer perception of xEVs? How does it change by EV type — mild, full, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric cars? What are the key reasons for the consideration of xEVs?
How has the awareness level of xEVs improved over the last few years? How has the switching behavior changed over the years?


  • Executive Summary
    • General Criteria for Purchasing a New Vehicle-By Current Vehicle Segment
    • General Criteria for Purchasing a New Vehicle-By Segment
    • Vehicle Purchase Criteria-By Current Vehicle Segment
    • Engine Selection Criteria-By Considered Fuel Type
    • Engine Selection Criteria-By Age and Household Income
    • Engine Selection Criteria-By Segment
  • Research Objectives and Methodology
    • Research Objectives
    • Research Methodology
    • Key Questions this Study will Answer
    • Sample Overview-Sample Structure
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Key Questions, US, 2016
    • Sample Overview-Respondents Overview
    • Sample Overview-Household Composition
    • Weighting Methodology
    • Psychographic Segments-Overview of Driver Segments
    • Vehicle Ownership-By Gender
    • Vehicle Ownership and Usage-By Gender
    • Current Fuel Type and Average Daily Mileage-By Segment
  • Vehicle Overview and Driving Profile
    • Respondent Profile-Respondent’s Current Vehicle Facts
    • Current Fuel Engine Type-By Region and Current Vehicle Segment
    • Vehicles with Turbo Charged or Supercharged Engine
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Share of Vehicles with Turbocharged or Supercharged Engines, US, 2016
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Reasons for Choosing Vehicle with Turbocharged or Supercharged Engine, US, 2016
    • Driving Patterns-Average Usage of Vehicle
  • General Purchasing Criteria
    • Criterion 1-Features
    • Criterion 2-Luxury and Non-luxury Vehicle
    • Criteria 3-By Gender, Age, and Household Income
    • Engine Selection Criteria
    • Engine Selection Criteria-2014 Versus 2016 Comparison
    • Engine Selection Criteria-By Current Vehicle Segment
    • Factors Determining Preferred Engine Choice
    • Factors Determining Preferred Engine Choice-By Segment
    • Factors Determining Preferred Engine Choice
    • Factors Determining Preferred Engine Choice-By Preferred Fuel Type
  • Fuel Efficiency Versus Performance Trade Off and Technology Priority
    • Fuel Efficiency versus Performance and Utility Trade off
    • Willingness to Pay for Fuel Economy Versus Performance
    • Willigness to Pay for Fuel Economy Versus Performance-By Segment
    • Importance of Vehicle Technologies
    • Importance of Vehicle Technologies-2014 Versus 2016
    • Importance of Vehicle Technologies-By Segment
    • Importance of Vehicle Technologies-By Factors
  • Satisfaction with the Current Vehicle
    • Importance Versus Satisfaction Matrix
    • Importance Versus Satisfaction Matrix-Male Versus Female Respondents
    • Importance Versus Satisfaction Matrix-Luxury Versus Non-luxury Vehicle Owners
  • Vehicle Switching Analysis and Vehicle Budget
    • Current Versus Preferred Vehicle Segment (Next Purchase)
    • Current Versus Preferred Vehicle Segment (Next Purchase)-By Segment
    • Current Versus Preferred Vehicle Segment (Next Purchase)
    • Bugdet for Next Vehicle
    • Preferred Way of Purchase
    • Willingness to Switch to a More Fuel-efficient Vehicle Based on Fuel Prices
    • Willingness to Switch to a More Fuel-efficient Vehicle Based on Fuel Prices- (2014 Versus 2016 Comparison)
  • Powertrain Preference in the Next Vehicle
    • Current Versus Preferred Fuel Type
    • Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type
    • Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type-2014 Versus 2016 Comparison
    • Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type-By Segment
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type By Segment, US, 2016
    • Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type-By Type
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Considered and Preferred Fuel Engine Type by Household Income, Luxury Versus Non-luxury Vehicle, US, 2016
    • Electric Vehicle as Primary Vehicle Versus Supplemental Vehicle-By Current Vehicle Segment
    • Preferred Number of Cylinders-By Future Vehicle Segment
  • Expected Uptake Rates for Powertrain for the Next Vehicle-Conjoint Results
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Major Engine Categories
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Gasoline Engine Types-By Next Vehicle Segment
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Gasoline Engine Types
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Gasoline Engine Options
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Gasoline Engine Type - Expected Uptake Rate by Next Vehicle Segment, US, 2016
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Diesel Engine Options-By Next Vehicle Segment
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Diesel Engine Options - Expected Uptake Rates for Powertrain by Next Vehicle Segment, US, 2016
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Diesel Engine Options
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Diesel Engine Options - Expected Uptake Rates for Powertrain by Segment, US, 2016
    • Powertrain Expected Uptake Rate of Plug-in Electric Engine Types
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Diesel Engine Options - Expected Uptake Rates for Powertrain by Segment, US, 2016
    • Expected Uptake Rates of Charging Options-By Next Vehicle Segment
  • Profile of Consumers Considering Different Fuel Engine Types
    • Considered Fuel Type by Demographics
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Considered Fuel Type by Demographics, US, 2016
    • Attitude Towards Environment-By Considered Fuel Type
    • Attitude Towards Vehicle Technology-By Considered Fuel Type
    • General Criteria for Purchasing a New Vehicle-By Considered Fuel Type
    • Current Fuel Type-By Considered Fuel Type
    • Mileage-By Considered Fuel Type
  • Willingness to Pay for Different Fuel Engine Types
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Hydrogen Fuel Cell Engine
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel and Hybrid
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel and Hybrid-2014 Versus 2016 Comparison
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Average Acceptable Premium Price for Diesel/Hybrid/ Electric Engine Vehicle, US, 2014 and 2016
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel and Hybrid-By Segment
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel/Hybrid/ Electric Engine Vehicle, US, 2016
    • Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel and Hybrid
      • Table Customer Preferences and Willingness to Pay for Powertrain Features: Willingness to Pay Extra for Diesel/Hybrid/ Electric Engine Vehicle by Gender, Age, and Household Income, US, 2016
  • Consumer Attitude and Expectations Toward Alternative Fuel Engines
    • Electric and PHEV Vehicles
    • Electric and PHEV Vehicles-2014 Versus 2016 Comparison
    • Electric Vehicle Driving Range Expectations
    • Electric Vehicle Driving Range Expectations-By Segment
    • Electric Vehicle Driving Range Expectations-2014 Versus 2016 Comparison
  • Impact of Volkswagen Diesel Scandal on Customer Perceptions
    • General Impact of the Volkswagen Scandal
    • General Impact of the Volkswagen Scandal-Income and Current Fuel Type
    • Impact on Volkswagen Brand
  • Growth Opportunities and Companies to Action
    • Growth Opportunity-Convert the Interest in xEVs to Sale
    • Strategic Imperatives for Consumer Interest in xEVs
  • Conclusions
    • Key Conclusions
  • Appendix
    • Market Engineering Methodology

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