Photo: Setagaya Ward, Tokyo
Global market research firm Synovate has released a study showing that six in ten people "would choose to buy a green car over a dream car, even if money was no object."
Synovate surveyed more than 13,500 people across 18 markets about issues such as green cars, vehicle ownership, intent to buy in the next year and attitudes towards cars, traffic, public transport and more. While we might argue that no car is better than any car, at least the figures are encouraging. 37% of respondents said a "green car" would be their preferred purchase and a further 22% claimed that "my dream car is a green car" - meaning that 59% showed the desire to go green. "Green or hybrid cars are more fuel efficient and, together with pollution concerns, this economical issue would be a big part of why Koreans put green over dream" according to Synovate Korea's Motoresearch Head, ByeongHwan Je.
Shinya Goto, Head of Synovate Japan's Motoresearch team, says that multiple factors are at work:
"Public transport, walking and bike riding are no doubt more popular in all these markets for similar reasons... the environment, exercise and economics. But in the case of Japan there is another important factor at work, one that has implications for the auto industry. The younger generation is moving away from personal transport. From the late teens to around 30, we see much less inclination to own a vehicle. These young people are environmentally aware and would rather spend their money on mobiles and clothes, taking public transport and creating a 'cocoon' with their mobiles or iPods. This is a real change from other generations."
CEO of Synovate Motoresearch, Scott Miller, says this trend will move beyond Japan, and predicts that two-car households will soon be reducing their driving and own only one car.
The survey was conducted in March across 18 diverse markets: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Britain and the United States.
Clearly, public transportation is the way of the future, if we are to look realistically at health issues, fossile fuel depletion and peak oil. In case you are wondering, this remarkable survey also asked if people would be riding bikes or walking more often. Of the 13,500 people (who all live in an urban environment), an overall 9% agreed that they would. The highest results with bike-friendly answers were Korea at 20%, Germany at 17%, China at 16% and Japan at 15%. Things are looking great for bicycle manufacturers!
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More Urban City Biking:
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Brought to you by Martin Frid at greenz.jp