Interestingly, however, according to a small study of 20 Hummer owners published in the J ournal of Consumer Research, that stigma may actually be a selling point for those who purchase Hummers. According to the authors of the study:
It's hard to argue that this report offers a conclusive look into the minds of Hummer owners and Hummer haters alike – especially when the sample size is so small – and we doubt it's going to put an end to the debate over the seemingly conflicting rights of Americans to purchase the vehicle of their choice, consume or conserve whatever resources they deem necessary and breathe clean air. That said, it's an interesting bit of research, no?As we studied American Hummer owners and their ideological beliefs, we found that they consider Hummer driving a highly moral consumption choice. For Hummer owners it is possible to claim the moral high ground... The moralistic critique of their consumption choices readily inspired Hummer owners to adopt the role of the moral protagonist who defends American national ideals.
[Source: Journal of Consumer Research - sub. req'd; via Wired]