January '19

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12 THE SHOP JANUARY 2019 Averaging approximately 10 hours per week behind the wheel, 29 percent of Americans have considered trading in their cars, trucks or SUVs in favor of other transportation options, according to a new study. The Daily Ride Index, conducted by global communications consultancy Ket- chum, found that cost is the main factor, with one-third (33 percent) of respondents claiming their vehicle is too expensive to operate. Convenience of alternative methods such as biking, walking or using subways and ride-sharing services, and environ- mental concerns are other high-ranking factors. "While we remain a car-dominant cul- ture, new forms of transportation have sparked reconsideration by many drivers. As our population increasingly moves toward cities and we focus on efficiency and simplification in all aspects of our lives, the opportunity for transportation services like ride-sharing, bike-sharing and even scooter-sharing services will only accelerate," says Kevin Oates, partner and managing director of Ketchum's trans- portation group. "What we see in this research is enthusiasm for new forms of transportation technology and services, but also hesitation. From a communica- tions perspective, organizations have to acknowledge both to break out of niche into the mainstream." As many transportation companies focus on the purchasing trends of mil- lennials and Generation Z, they may be overlooking the drivers of a future trans- portation revolution—Gen X. While 37 percent of millennials and 32 percent of Gen Zers say they have considered giving up their own vehicles, 44 percent of Gen Xers may be willing to hand over their keys. Meanwhile, only 13 percent of baby boomers have considered going car-free, and men are 2.5-times more likely to consider giving up their daily drive than women (41 percent vs. 16 percent). "Although millennials and Gen Z rep- resent a huge market for automakers, this study tells us we shouldn't be dismissing the changing needs of Gen X, which still has tremendous purchasing power and many years of mobility ahead," says Oates. Transportation-as-a-service is a way of life for 1-in-5 respondents, with 19 percent indicating they use pay-as-you-go trans- portation options like public transit, ride- sharing apps, taxis and on-demand bikes and scooter rentals on a daily basis. Access to these options is a defining factor for those considering going car-free—22 per- cent of respondents claim public transit meets all their travel needs. Other issues cited by car owners include the fact that driving often takes longer than other modes of transportation (27 percent) and that finding parking can be difficult (24 percent). Despite their use of alternative transpor- tation options, almost nine in 10 respon- dents (87 percent) report they still use their personal vehicles to get around at least a few times per week. Walking is the second most common mode of transpor- tation, with 62 percent getting from place to place by foot a few times per week. Alternative forms of transportation include: biking (17 percent), bus (15 percent), taxi or ride-sharing service (12 percent), train or subway (12 percent), motorcycle (11 percent), shared bike or scooter (10 percent), and paratransit (7 percent). WHAT DRIVES THEM? When it comes to car buying, Americans favor safety, mobile integration and more eco-friendly engine technology. One-quarter of the population (24 per- cent) believes collision avoidance systems (such as automatic braking) are the single most important automotive technology they are looking for. Bluetooth integration was selected by 12 percent of respondents, When it comes to new car buying, Americans favor safety, mobile integration and more eco- friendly engine technology. "As other transit models broaden our mobility and provide more efficient, convenient alternatives to driving, automotive companies will need to step up the pace to innovate in different ways and keep more Americans behind the wheel." Americans Weigh Mobility Options Riding the Economic Boom

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