Research reveals vehicle popularity by U.S. region

Nov 12, 2012

New research released by Jumpstart Automotive Group on regional online car shopping trends reveals vehicle popularity by U.S. region. Car shoppers in the Northwest and Southwest prefer hybrids and compacts; SUVs, trucks and sedans dominate the Central states; and East Coast buyers favor luxury vehicles, according to a Jumpstart press release. And residents in California had the highest concentration of used-car shoppers, followed closely by those living in Texas.

Jumpstart, which provides digital marketing solutions to automotive advertisers, analyzed the consumer behaviors of roughly 19 million monthly users across its suite of 14 automobile websites from January to June 2012. The research drew connections between specific U.S. territories and the most popularly researched cars, and top car shopping considerations among consumers within those territories.

“It’s interesting to see the role socioeconomics plays in online shopping trends,” said Libby Murad-Patel, senior director of Jumpstart Strategic Insights. “Our audience of nearly 20 million monthly car shoppers has helped us paint a market-reflective picture of the vehicles people want based on the areas in which they live.”

According to Murad-Patel, factors such as employment, income, standard of living, and social and cultural influences drive online consumer consideration along with geographical aspects like weather and transportation systems.

People living in the Northwest, including Alaska, represent the highest concentration of hybrid car shoppers of any territory. Compact-car shoppers were predominantly settled in the Southwest, while people living in the North Central states prefer sedans and SUVs, and those living in the South Central states shop for trucks more prevalently than other vehicle segment.

The Northeast, North Central and Southwest regions represent the largest share of online shoppers across Jumpstart’s audience; the top states within these regions for online car shoppers are New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, California and Colorado.

Jumpstart’s research also exposed pricing trends, highlighting that buyers in the Northwest and South Central U.S. are the most price conscious in their vehicle purchases, whereas a car’s features such as performance, styling, color and safety are a top concern for those in the Southwest and Northeast. Car buyers living in North Central and Southeast regions are typically evenly influenced by both price and vehicle features.

Across all U.S. regions, the most popularly researched car models among Jumpstart shoppers are the Ford Mustang, the Honda Accord and the Ford Focus. Ford dominated brand interest among the online shoppers, followed by Chevy and Toyota.