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We've known for a while now that Mexicans are getting some Chinese cars with their ten gallon jars of pickles, but what about Americans? Would we go for vehicles from another country from across the Pacific? There's a wonderful moment at the end of Tucker: A Man and his Dreams where Jeff Bridge's Preston Tucker character pleads with the jury at his corruption trial that if American industry doesn't change change course, we'll soon be buying our cameras from the Japanese.

According to a new study, 15% of American new car shoppers are ready to buy cars from China, while 11% are ready to buy their wheels from India. Ready for the kicker? Just 16% said they would consider a car from Korea. Ouch. Said George Peterson, head of the study, "As Hyundai and Kia have been on the American scene for decades now, it's surprising that consideration for Chinese and Indian brands, sight unseen, would be about as strong as it is for the Korean brands." Surprising, sure. And if you live near Seoul, depressing. Full press release after the jump.


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[Source: Auto Pacific]
Americans Open To Vehicles From China and India

By George Peterson

July 28, 2009
New Study Shows Willingness to Accept Unknown Brands

Tustin, CA (July 28, 2009) - Newly released research shows fifteen percent of new car buyers in the United States say they would consider purchasing their next vehicle from China, and eleven percent would consider buying a car from India, without knowing specific brands or vehicles.This compares with sixteen percent who said they would consider a vehicle from Korea, which has been marketing vehicles in the U.S. since the 1980s.

"As Hyundai and Kia have been on the American scene for decades now, it's surprising that consideration for Chinese and Indian brands, sight unseen, would be about as strong as it is for the Korean brands," said George Peterson, president of automotive research firm AutoPacific and author of the study. "However, with so many premium and high-tech non-automotive products already being made in China and purchased by Americans, why not automobiles too? It appears that buyers in America are willing to give Chinese and Indian vehicles a chance right out of the box. Understanding these consumers will be critically important to the success of any newcomer."

The just-released study - "Opportunity for Chinese and Indian Brands in the USA" - provides new insight into who these consumers are and what they're looking for in their next car or truck. Based on a national survey of more than 30,000 new car and truck buyers, AutoPacific's 2009 Research Suite database reveals insights into the willingness of Americans to consider cars and trucks coming from China and India.

"Not only are a significant number of people willing to consider Chinese and Indian brands, this group consists of highly desirable buyers who would be coveted by any manufacturer. They tend to be young, well-educated, and affluent for their age and have good jobs in administrative, health care and middle management positions," added Peterson.

The study shows Chinese and Indian considerers are more likely to currently own Japanese and Korean brands, indicating that these brands may have the most competition from the new entries, rather than domestic brands like Chrysler, Ford and GM. The study also revealed that while those who would consider a car from China and India rate reliability and durability high, they are not as interested in the dynamics of a vehicle like handling, braking and acceleration.

About AutoPacific

AutoPacific is a future-oriented automotive marketing research and product-consulting firm. Every year AutoPacific publishes a wide variety of syndicated studies on the automotive industry. The firm, founded in 1986, also conducts extensive proprietary research and consulting for auto manufacturers, distributors, marketers and suppliers worldwide. Company headquarters and its state-of-the-art automotive research facility are in Tustin, California, with an affiliate office in the Detroit area. Additional information can be found on AutoPacific's websites:? http://www.autopacific.com and http://news.vehiclevoice.com.