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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.



[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.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 49 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      While it's true that we get a lot of crap from China, not all Chinese manufactured goods are steaming piles - what ends up in consumers' hands needs to undergo significant QA, which is where the Chinese fall down.

      A couple of examples:

      - Lenovo made laptops for IBM until they bought the Thinkpad line. IBM Thinkpads were among the sturdiest, best built, most stable, longest lasting laptops money could buy. The new models that came out after the Lenovo takeover don't enjoy that reputation, despite being made in the same place.

      - I was surprised to find out that my pricey Bowers & Wilkins speakers were no longer made in England, but had been manufactured in China. After thinking about it for a few minutes, I stopped caring - they still look and (more importantly) sound fantastic.

      I for one, wouldn't mind buying a Tata Nano (or Chinese knockoff...) to commute to work in after my GTI dies - the money I save on a commuter car can be put towards something truly fun (still waiting for the bank account to show Porsche numbers...).
      Stop
      • 5 Years Ago
      Indian manufacturers may reach where the Koreans were 5 years ago but won't see it happening with chinkese manufacturers.
      Stop
      • 5 Years Ago
      tata nano >>>>>>>>>> |||||||||||unsurpassable wall||||||||||||| >>>>>>>>>>>>>> every qinese manufacturer combined.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "And some would say trampling religious freedoms, stifling dissent (no matter how peaceful), and imprisoning those who express their opinions about the government are pretty cut and dry. No one likes to talk about it because China's economic system has adopted a more capitalistic approach, but they are very much a communist country where freedom and individual liberties are too often denied."


      And despite this, you have no problem whatsoever with American companies doing business within, and making money from, such a regime!

      • 5 Years Ago
      If only 15 percent of Americans would consider a Korean car and Hyundai/Kia has a 7.1 percent market share (as of February), they must do really well at convincing the few people who will look at their products.
      • 5 Years Ago
      When are we going to see African car companies? Ratings in Zebra power, anyone?
        • 5 Years Ago
        The day pigs fly is when a country in Africa get's its act together enough to manufacture on a decent level. They need to figure out how to grow food and stop killing each other before they can make that step.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I can't decide if your comment is racist, stupid, or just not funny at all. I'll go with the latter. Just stop posting.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They assemble cars in South Africa.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I would much rather go for Korean cars (because Hyundai/KIA has really become a force to be reckoned with and because Ssangyong (despite the [gasp] Rodius) might actually have something going for it with the new Chairman W) and Indian cars because both are much better built than most Chinese cars (Roewe and few others notwithstanding). Of course, it may also be because my parents are from India :).
      • 5 Years Ago
      That Mahindra diesel hybrid is the first Indian vehicle I've ever been slightly interested in. As for China, there's nothing I want from there... Unless they buy Hummer and make the HX.
      • 5 Years Ago
      >>> We need to start buying everything from American companies or else we will be importing everything

      Yeah, all those high-quality, overpriced cars from the UAW are working out so well for everyone. Just ask GM bondholders and shareholders.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe Penske can sell Chinese and Indian cars through his Saturn network.
      • 5 Years Ago
      build it like crap, sell it cheap. If it isn't cheap, build it right.

      go one of those routes and they'll be fine.
      • 5 Years Ago
      China and India has stole enough of are work, I will stick with my German car
        • 5 Years Ago
        I hope you're saying you live in Germany then..
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