He points out that today's young people don't necessarily see 'inexpensive' and 'gets great gas mileage' as top priorities for their vehicles. According to a study by automotive analysts, such buyers feel a sense of entitlement fostered by their parents. Levin's own daughter rejected a perfectly running Ford Taurus and rode with friends until given a Chevrolet Blazer.
Levin does address the lone exception, Scion. In fact, he writes that the Japanese automakers have the most experience in marketing small vehicles, and are the best equipped to persuade reluctant Americans of their validity. As the Toyota Echo showed, though, even they have had their share of flops.
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Related: Toyota, Honda, Nissan's smallest prepped for battle; Chrysler, Ford, and GM missing the subcompact wave?
[Bloomberg via Financial Express]