Female Car Owners Are More Tech-Ready Than Men
Atlanta—Women tend to believe in the technology and safety potential of connected vehicles and autonomous driving much more so than men, according to the annual Jabian Automotive Industry Survey.
A blind survey of 1,045 North American drivers identifies preferences for vehicle technology and automotive services. It also sheds some light on the future of automotive services and car buying.
Men and women tend to have similar decision criteria when it comes to selecting an automotive service provider. More than half of respondents said they consult with a friend or family member for referrals. Yet when it comes to the automotive service itself, most women (44 percent) take their vehicles to a dealership, followed by a private mechanic (37 percent) or a nationally branded repair shop (17 percent). However, when asked about who they trust, 50 percent of women said a private mechanic, with dealerships at 40 percent.
Nearly half of female respondents (45 percent) said they believe they know more about their car than the mechanic gives them credit for. More than a quarter (26 percent) feel they aren’t treated equally to male customers.
When it comes to technology, 38 percent of women believe driverless cars are the way of the future, compared to only 21 percent of men. More than half of women (54 percent) would pay for an app that allows their car to communicate what’s wrong with it prior to service, compared to only 38 percent of men.
“It’s interesting to see how open females are to more technology in and around the use of automobiles and automotive service,” said Jenni Crenshaw, executive director at Jabian Consulting. “When diving into the numbers, we see that women want to use technology for convenience and empowerment, while men tend to favor its use for efficiency and entertainment.”
Nearly half (47 percent) of women reported feeling comfortable buying a car completely online, which was more than the 40 percent reported by men. The biggest hesitation among both men and women was the desire to see the car in person before purchase.
When evaluating alternative fuel cars or electric vehicles, 45 percent of women and 35 percent of men would consider it for their next purchase. Higher upfront costs and long-term maintenance were the two most cited concerns about buying an electric or alternative fuel vehicle.
Future of driving
Interestingly, 25 percent of female car owners would prefer to get rid of their car in favor of public or alternative transportation if it was available. Only 15 percent of men said the same. When it comes to handing over the keys for good, 43 percent of women and 32 percent of men expect to no longer be able to drive themselves at age 80.