Americans not too keen on Indian, Chinese cars

August 23rd, 2011 - 8:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Aug 23 (IANS) With a wave of new cars from India and China set to debut in the United States, a new study has found significant barriers for them to gain market share among American consumers.

The new models, including those from Mahindra, Tata and BYD entering the US in the coming months, could face a purchase consideration curve similar to Korean vehicles when they launched in the US, according to the study by GfK Automotive, leading provider of product, brand and consumer research to the global automotive industry.

In that case, it took more than 15 years for consumers to significantly increase their consideration to purchase Korean vehicles, GfK’s Barometer of Automotive Awareness and Imagery Study said.

Approximately one-third of consumers intending to purchase a vehicle are open to a Chinese (38 percent) or Indian (30 percent) manufacturer, compared to 95 percent of consumers open to purchasing from a US automaker, it said.

The openness to purchasing a Chinese and Indian vehicle is highest among Gen Y consumers, with 52 percent saying they are open to a vehicle from a Chinese automaker and 41 percent saying they are open to a vehicle from an Indian automaker.

Openness is lowest among baby boomers, 29 percent of whom said they would be open to purchasing from a Chinese manufacturer and 22 percent said they would purchase from an Indian automaker.

“For Indian and Chinese auto manufacturers to accelerate the adoption curve and build loyalty quicker than Korean automakers did, they must hit the ground running and communicate their story to potential buyers,” said GfK Automotive managing director, Don DeVeaux.

“They need to make consumers comfortable with the brand and secure in their purchase decision by providing their proof points for quality, customer support and technology, as well as demonstrating their commitment to innovation.”

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at

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