They’ve Got Their Licenses, Now They Just Need Cars

As if the world weren’t alarming enough already, J.D. Power and Associates notes that Generation Y is buying lots of cars. “This year almost 10 percent of households headed by a Gen Y consumer will buy new vehicles, accounting for roughly 700,000 new vehicle purchases,” says a new report. These “style-conscious” folks tend to be in the market for vehicles with “fun-to-drive characteristics.” One surprise: “Gen Y consumers are less interested than older generations in environmentally friendly vehicles.” Offering another look at young car buyers (or wanna-be buyers) is a 360 College Explorer Outlook Study from 360 Youth. Asked to cite the factors they see as most important when they’re buying a vehicle, college students gave the highest tallies to overall quality (87 percent), price (85 percent) and reputation for reliability (78 percent). Just 23 percent chose “low polluting.” Finally, a poll of single women by Stuff provides yet another perspective. Given pairings of vehicle types and asked to say which is “sexier,” respondents picked SUVs over coupes (58 percent vs. 42 percent), minivans over station wagons (66 percent vs. 34 percent) and black cars over red cars (76 percent vs. 24 percent). As you can see from the chart above, more single women are drawn to SUVesque men than to all other sorts combined.