It is wise to say that different people have different tastes and preferences, one man’s meat may be another man’s poison. If we narrow the market to the choices available on cars, there are various brands, models, and colors: land rover, range rover, Peugeot, hummer, red, blue, brown, USVs, sedan etc.so, what really influences the choice that people make on cars? This is the core of this essay with the main focus on the consumer decision-making model in the automobile in industry in the United States. More to that is how people pick the model of the car down to the brand, model, color.e.t.c
On an introductory note is the fact that the automobile industry picked up after the Second World War shifting the focus from producing war related goods to consumer related ones. This was particularly so in the United States in the 1950s, with an approximation that one in six Americans was in the Automobile production industry (Zikmund, 2003). More to that is the fact that in the years to come, people with good jobs were accorded the chance to afford vehicles particularly due to the increased vehicle production. In this regard, many businesses sprung up with the main intention to meet the growing need for vehicles in the society.
Choices of brands and models
To begin with, is the financial capabilities of the buyer. Interestingly, this is the first factor that consumers take into consideration when they want to purchase a new car (Cao & Mokhtarian, 2003). This is more so to the fact that many people would want to have expensive vehicles at their disposal but due to financial and budgetary variations, this is not possible. The consumers will tend to define a certain price which any vehicle should be within for it to be viable for purchase (Borgsteede & Tattenhove, 2004). Furthermore, the purchase choices available in the market are: either paying cash, financing or leasing the vehicle. In paying cash, it is of utmost importance for the buyer to consider other factors such as the registration fee and the insurance. In the other two methods of purchase, the buyer needs to consider what he/she can pay each month, the premiums and the registration fees among others. All these to a large extent influences the choice of a model or brand since no buyer would want to be stuck with the payment (Wardlaw, 2016).
Secondly, the functional factor influences a buyer on the choice of a vehicle. It is all about need and the sensible aspect in the purchase of any automobile (Mogas, Riera, & Bennett, 2006). In turn, the need factor influences the choice that any consumer will go for such as the choice of a family brand for family need, the choice of a brand that meets business needs, the choice of a brand that meets work related ethics and so on.
The generational view is another aspect that influences the choice of a brand or model of the buyer (Deloitte, 2004). Moreover, travel attitudes and certain demographic characteristics such as age determine the choice of vehicle (Choo & Mokhtarian, 2002). Some people, often influenced by age or sex, will tend to purchase vintage and traditional vehicle models while some people will tend to be more inclined to purchase some models meeting other standards. Such standards may include the mobility aspect, the connectivity aspect and the reduction in cost.
Another attribute that plays an important role in the choice of consumers is the quality of the car. Different consumers have different aspects attached to their choices of preference such as the safety of the vehicle and reactional preferences, as in the case of danger. More to that are the characteristics associated with the car, such as the appearance, number of seats and even the comfort of the vehicle. Furthermore, consumers tend to purchase vehicles based on the intrinsic characteristics such as the engine sound, acceleration power, and the horsepower. These have been stated to be important to the consumer for basically two reasons: some people would go for the aspect of speed and safety due to their sportive interest while others would go for these aspects because of the safety feature.
An important non-monetary aspect that can come into consideration with the purchase of an automobile is a brand loyalty associated with a certain customer (Dowling & Uncles, 1997). In this aspect, some people will tend to be more inclined to some brands that they are familiar with due to their experiences.
More to the above-stated factors is the household aspect in vehicle purchase. That stated households are important units in the choice of a vehicle (Kurani, Turrentine, & Sperling, 1996).This can be attributed to the fact that the spouse and children play that crucial role in selection and purchase of a vehicle primarily because of the choice associated with the number of seats, luggage space, comfort etc.
The last, but not least, a factor that influences the choice of a brand or model is the socioeconomic attributes that are associated with a person and a brand. As a matter of fact, vehicles do have an important image function and status associated with it. In this regard, some people, such as politicians, will go for a certain brands that signify their status in the society (Kotler, 2006).it is in this context that we need to acknowledge the fact that social, cultural and personal factors that are primarily associated with the consumer tend to play a pivotal role in the decision involving purchase of any automobile.
From this essay, it is very clear that various factors play a role in the selection of a car brand, model, color etc. Some questions that may arise from these factors, therefore, may be: Which combination(s) of factors has a substantial impact on the choice of a vehicle brand or model? And, which is the main factor influencing the selection of vehicles and how do the automobile industries tend to come up with this?
The automobile industry has developed remarkably due to the increase in demand for automobiles. This stated the industry offers a variety of models and brands that are meant to satisfy the diversity in selection. Interestingly, considering that times are changing, there is bound to be an increase in this diversification in production and selection.
Borgsteede, A., & Tattenhove, V. (2004). Gecombineerde krachten,dubbel zo goed?Een Oordezoek naar stimulering van hybriden.
Cao, X., & Mokhtarian, P. (2003). The future demand for alternative fuel passenger vehicle:A preliminary literature review.
Choo, S., & Mokhtarian, P. (2002). The relationship of vehicle type choice to personality, lifestyle attitudinal and demographic variables.
Deloitte. (2004). Exploring Consumer mobility choices and transportation decisions. Global Automotive Consumer Study.
Dowling, G. R., & Uncles, M. (1997). Do customer loyalty programs really work?
Kotler, P. (2006). Principles of Marketing.
Kurani, K., Turrentine, T., & Sperling, S. (1996). Testing electric vehicle demand in ‘Hybrid households’ using a reflexive survey.
Mogas, J., Riera, P., & Bennett, J. (2006). A comparison of contingent valuation and choice Modelling with second order interaction.
Wardlaw, C. (2016, Mar 10). 8 important decisions to make before buying a new car. Retrieved from daily news: dailynews.com/amp/autos/street-smart/8 important decisions to make before buying a new car
Zikmund, W. G. (2003). Exploring Marketing Research.