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Of the vehicles released in 2005, the Chevrolet Cobalt generated the most "buzz" among Generation Y buyers, with the Hummer H3 attracting the most attention from grunge-era Gen Xers. Baby-boomers flocked to Dodge's retro-esque Charger, and the grey-haired set went bonkers for the Ford Five Hundred. The Charger was the only vehicle to get a top-5 mention by both Gen Y and pre-boomers, which makes us wonder if the Buick Lucerne will be able achieve the same generation crossover feat in next year's survey.

The survey doesn't appear biased towards domestics, so the near-shutout of foreign nameplates that appear on the survey (only the Lexus RX400h and Mercedes CLS managed to move the buzz-meter) has got to be encouraging for US manufacturers - if indeed it's not simply a single year aberration or a result of some hidden statistical slant.  

A large "WTF?" goes to buyers in the Hybrid/Alternative Fuel category, who apparently got all abuzz over the Dodge Charger. Oh, yeah, we forgot - there is indeed the highly popular Charger Hybrid. And don't ask us why the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 appears in this survey, as it's a MY2007 introduction that was not available during the period of the survey.

A tip o' the hat goes to GM's FYI Blog.

[Source: Harris Interactive; the full press release is posted after the jump]


IRVINE, Calif., May 10, 2006 – New-vehicle launches creating the most buzz differ greatly by demographic and vehicle consideration groups, according to the 2006 AutoVIBES Demographics reports, now available from online research leaders Harris Interactive® and Kelley Blue Book Marketing Research. The annual AutoVIBES Demographics series of reports provide significant insight into the diverse vehicle shopping preferences and opinions of different age groups, ethnicities and segment consideration groups.

Most Buzz-Worthy New Nameplates Among Demographic/Vehicle Consideration Groups


New-Vehicle Nameplate Seen as Having the Most Buzz

Generation Y (Born from 1977-1986)

Chevrolet Cobalt

Generation X (Born from 1965-1976)

Hummer H3

Baby Boomers (Born from 1946-1964)

Dodge Charger

Pre-Boomers (Born 1945 and earlier)

Ford Five Hundred


Ford Shelby Cobra GT 500


Lexus 400h


Dodge Charger

Luxury Considerers

Mercedes-Benz CLS

Minivan Considerers

Ford Freestyle

Truck Considerers

Dodge Charger

SUV Considerers

Hummer H3

Sporty Car Considerers

Ford Shelby Cobra GT 500

Sedan Considerers

Ford Five Hundred

Hybrid/Alternative Fuel Considerers

Dodge Charger

AutoVIBES examined 49 new-nameplate launches in 2005, 25 of which were domestics. Car-buyers in 14 demographic/vehicle consideration groups rated 12 domestics and only two imports as being the most buzz-worthy.

"Domestic manufacturers have recently introduced some exciting new products that are catching the eye of many consumers," said Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and market analyst for Kelley Blue Book and kbb.com. "The highly-anticipated Dodge Charger is making waves among buyers in many different demographics."

The new AutoVIBES study also shows vehicle shoppers of all generations see domestic vehicles as the most buzz-worthy, although each generation rates a different domestic vehicle in the top spot. The youngest age-group surveyed, Generation Y, and the oldest age-group surveyed, Pre-Boomers, had only one vehicle in common on their top five buzz list: Dodge Charger.

Different Generations Weigh In: The Top Five New-Vehicle Nameplates with the Most Buzz


Generation Y

(Born from 1977-1986)


(Born 1945 and earlier)


Chevrolet Cobalt

Ford Five Hundred


Dodge Charger

Buick LaCrosse


Ford Shelby Cobra GT 500

Cadillac DTS


Hummer H3

Ford Freestyle


Pontiac G6

Dodge Charger

While different groups chose a variety of vehicles as most buzz-worthy, there was universal agreement among all that the Mercedes-Benz CLS was the most "sophisticated." In addition, the Pontiac Solstice was rated high by all groups for being "exciting," "youthful" and "imaginative."

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      Really #19?

      My numbers may ahve been wrong them but a lot of the old muscle cars i've seen were actually rather heavy most being the 3500+ weight range. Especially for some of the larger ones. But i figured that was to be expected due to the types of materials they were composed of.

      Well it wouldnt be the first time someone's been proved wrong =)

      as for #16 yeah it IS a heavy car... but it's also a 4 door sedan... the mustang and GTO are also pretty heavy themselves albeit they ahve 2 less doors, but sometimes people (like myself) need those extra 2 doors.

      Not a lot of grown people like to squeeze into the back of a mustang i'll tell ya that much right now. I'm not even that tall and i hate squeezing into the back of my buddies mustang.
      • 8 Years Ago
      What is up with the RX-8 rims on it?
      • 8 Years Ago
      rember, the charger is a hybrid, it burns gas and tires! and apparently tree huggers egos.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Wow. Ya know, every time I see a new report from a well liked rating company say American cars are the way to go I get excited. Then I come to AutoBlog and see all of the nay-sayers having a field day. Take Car and Driver... when they like an American car C&D is full of crap, but when they like a German or Asian car C&D is the bible of automotive mags.

      I think it is kind of funny really, that this list is dominated with the "ugly pig" the Dodge Charger. I would just like to say that I am thinking of buying this car because I would like to fit my 6foot something friends in the back seat AND through some camping gear in the trunk, AND smoke the rice-burners at stop lights AND have DVD navi, AND leather AND a 6-disk CD changer AND... Well the list goes on.

      Or maybe I'll look at a H3, so I can tow a small boat behind me. Or maybe I'll look at a cobalt, so I can get over 30 mpg. Or maybe I'll look at the Ford 500 so I can have a full sized luxo cruiser for less then 30K (less than a base 3-series). Or maybe I'll look at a G6 so I can get a hard top convertible for less than 30K.

      None of that stuff will any other manufacturer make... Oh sure, you can get a 420 HP engine, but not for less than 40K. In fact the current BMW M3 has only 333 HP and costs about the same as the SRT-8. I don’t care about what they are coming out with for now. And sure, I can get a nice full sized luxo job but not for less than 30K. I don't care how much you like your Camry it is NOT a luxo barge like the Ford is. Oh, and if you think the Ford is only going to be Found On Road Dead don't forget it's on a Volvo platform.

      I have to laugh at some of the comments one can find here at AutoBlog... even my own. But don't forget that even if you are a customizer, the real experts are the people who get paid millions of dollars a year to figure out what we the people what to buy... The people have spoken, American autos are the cars to buy.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Generation Y - Born from 1977-1986


      Uh, Generation Y started in the early eighties....

      • 8 Years Ago
      Maybe people thought they were being asked if they wanted a charger for their hybrid?
      • 8 Years Ago
      The Dodge Charger is an unGodly ugly car. 4-door sports car you say? Sports cars have to look good and play good. This one only does the latter. The Chevy Cobalt's interior is crap. I hope they nix it and rebadge it as a Pontiac. Looked better I thought but for the price of a Cobalt, you can get the new '06 Civic with more options.
      • 8 Years Ago
      wow I cant believe how dumb people are

      charger as the best hybrid?

      is this a joke? if not then americans truly are pretty stupid
      • 8 Years Ago
      Hey, at least they didn't pick the Honda Ridgleline for the truck category. I must say that the charger does a better impersonation of a truck than the Honda. Coupled with the news of Toyota's 1 million vehicles being recalled, i'm pretty sure Jap fans have nothing bad to say about our domestic brands.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The pictured Charger is the '07 SRT-8 in the Super Bee paint scheme. I dunno if I prefer it over my black SRT-8, but it's nice. The yellow Charger R/T Daytonas don't seem to be selling very well, at least not in the Seattle area.

      I bought my SRT like 2 months ago and the dealer still has what seems to be the same 4 or 5 yellow R/Ts on the lot.
      • 8 Years Ago
      This is good marketing hype but it does not buzz me in the least.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "yeah, but it looks like a pig"

      It *IS* a pig... weighing in at over 4000 lbs. To heck with that 4-door abomination... bring on the Challenger (what the Charger SHOULD have been)!
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