New KBB study: Men and women differ on new-car shopping styles

By Bob Nagy on October 15, 2014 7:38 AM

The latest Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence's analysis of data gathered from KBB.com site visitors and survey information generated by BrandWatch Combined User Profile, Recall Awareness and Price Quote Follow-Up studies found that men and women tend to approach the new-vehicle purchase process from two rather diverse perspectives. Using input from approximately 40,000 U.S. adult respondents, the study discovered that former are primarily motivated by specific features while the latter are most frequently attracted to a particular brand. 

Taking two paths to the same goal

"It's striking that while there exist many similarities between how men and women shop for vehicles, there also are some very marked differences," said Hwei-Lin Oetken, vice president of market intelligence for Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com. The research showed that one in five men go into the purchases process already having settled on a specific vehicle while women are twice as likely to be undecided as to which would be the best fit. It also indicated that while 58 percent of men are confident in the car-buying arena only 38 percent of women in this study made the same claim. That datapoint was underscored by the fact that the entire process took a median 63 days for men compared to 75 days for women, who dedicated more time to doing research in an effort to build their confidence and knowledge.

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The KBB/BrandWatch research also found several other pertinent gender-related differences that impact this most critical purchase decision. Men are more likely to see vehicles as being tied to their personal image and accomplishments. They place particular emphasis on exterior/interior styling, technology and ruggedness, favoring domestic-branded trucks but European coupes and luxury sedans. Women generally view vehicles in a more functional light and tend to put greater emphasis on tangible benefits like durability, reliability, safety and affordability. They prefer non-luxury Asian-brand SUVs and sedans which are viewed as being more practical. Finally, men see ultimate success in any transaction as getting the best deal while women define it as driving off with the exact vehicle they want.

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Despite the divergence in process specifics, KBB.com remains the single best and most-trusted resource for any new-car - or used car -- buyer. With comprehensive reviews of every new model, a selection of pricing and valuation tools plus our exclusive Fair Purchase Price information, we're always here to help you make the most enlightened decision. 

 

 

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