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Marketing Cars to Millennials and Gen X - US - June 2015

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Published Date : Jun 2015

Category :

Advertising and Marketing

No. of Pages : N/A

Millennials are a driving force in the automotive market. Despite a perception that Millennials don’t buy cars, there are plenty of Millennials out there – and plenty of them either own cars or are interested in owning cars. Millennials are urban, cash-strapped, and tech-savvy; and they’re also at the start of their careers and beginning to start families.
Table of Content


What you need to know
New cars
Used cars
Certified Pre-Owned cars (CPO)
Franchised dealerships

Executive Summary

The issues
Figure 1: Vehicle ownership, by demographics, March 2015
Millennials are cash-strapped
Figure 2: Millennial and Gen X by household income, March 2015
Millennials are more urban than Gen Xers
Figure 3: Millennials and Gen Xers, by area, March 2015
The opportunities
Carmakers can offer small cars to entice Millennials
Figure 4: Purchase drivers for Millennials, March 2015
Millennials more social-media savvy than Gen X
Figure 5: Research tools used by Millennials and Gen Xers, March 2015
What it means

The Market – What You Need to Know

Millennials do have access to cars
Urbanization, debt, and lower household incomes are all challenges facing the market.
Millennials are a difficult group to market cars to

Market Factors

Millennials own cars after all
Income impacts potential for car buying
Urbanization drives Millennial and Gen X buying choices
Smartphones and tablets impact the automotive market
Millennials search for tech, value, and practicality

Key Players – What You Need to Know

Ford, Honda, Toyota, BMW, Audi high on Millennial shopping lists
Marketing to Millennials can be tricky
Small, practical products pave the way forward

What’s Working?

Ford, Toyota, Audi, BMW getting Millennials’ attention
Figure 6: Brands under future consideration – Any brand, March 2015

What’s Struggling?

Past reliability performance, poor marketing can hamstring a brand

What’s Next?

New products aimed at Millennials (and Gen X) show the way forward

The Consumer – What You Need to Know

Millennials are in the city, Gen X in the suburbs
Millennials use lots of social media, but Gen X is just as Internet savvy
Gen X worried about price, Millennials about how “cool” a vehicle is

Who is Today’s Millennial and Gen Xer?

Millennials are urban, tech-friendly, and many are just starting their careers
Figure 7: Millennial and Gen X BY household income, March 2015
Gen Xers higher earners, may bode well for car market

Millennials are Tech-savvy Shoppers

Millennials turn to the internet to research their purchases
Figure 8: Millennial and Gen X Research tools, March 2015
Neither Millennials nor Gen X have abandoned dealerships
Figure 9: Future vehicle-purchasing plans, March 2015

Purchase Drivers

Price and safety trump tech, but it still matters
Figure 10: Purchase factors, March 2015
Millennials prioritize tech over green

Amount Willing to Pay for Next Vehicle

Millennials are looking for affordable vehicles, Gen Xers will spend more
Figure 11: Amount willing to pay for next vehicle purchase, March 2015
Millennials searching for practical vehicles that represent value

Reasons for Purchasing

Millennials, Gen Xers have different reasons for vehicle purchases
Figure 12: Reasons for purchasing, March 2015

Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

Consumer survey data
Abbreviations and terms

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