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Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Female Car Consumers – US market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

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What are the key challenges facing the industry? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

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The modern female car consumer doesn’t have time for automakers’ outdated views of women. She’s making vehicle purchase decisions on her own, striving to be understood at the individual level, and she’s looking for more female representation from auto brands.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Hannah Keshishian, a leading analyst in the Automotive sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Female purchasing power is recognized across numerous industries: beauty, household, retail – the list goes on. But when it comes to making car purchases, women are made to feel as if their money and buying power doesn’t matter as much as their male counterparts’. Despite perceptions that women aren’t into cars, aren’t car people, or simply don’t care – female car buyers are just as invested as men when it comes to their automotive purchases Hannah Keshishian
Automotive Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

          • What you need to know about female car buyers
            • Female car buyers have the same vehicle needs as men
              • Don’t assume female consumers don’t know anything about cars
                • How automakers can succeed with female consumers
                  • Incorporate more (modern) women into campaigns
                    • Be up front about the “fine print”
                      • Where to go from here
                      • The Market – What You Need to Know

                        • Female population expected to grow by 5 million
                          • Women are getting married later in life
                            • Women are having children much later compared to previous generations
                            • Market Size

                              • Female population projected to grow by approximately 5 million by 2024
                                • Figure 1: Women aged 18 or older, by age, 2014-24
                            • Market Breakdown

                              • Women are opting to get married later
                                • Figure 2: Median age at first marriage, by gender, 2008-18
                              • Female median income (still) lags behind
                                • Figure 3: Median earnings of full-time, year-round workers, by gender and female-to-male earnings ratio, in inflation-adjusted dollars, 1960-2016
                              • Women are having children later
                                • Figure 4: [Mean age at birth is the arithmetic average of the age (years) of mothers at time of birth, computed directly from the frequency of births by age of mother and live-birth order. Live-birth order refers to number of children born alive to mother]
                            • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                              • Built Ford Tough Mom sets precedent for her daughter
                                • Glass-shattering female car designer to be inducted into Automotive Hall of Fame
                                  • Volkswagen catches heat for “sexist” car commercial
                                  • What’s Happening

                                    • Automotive Hall of Fame inducts ground-breaking female designer
                                      • Industry insiders call for more female workplace representation
                                      • Who to Watch

                                          • Ford shows what a “Built Ford Tough” Mom looks like
                                            • Figure 5: Ford “Built For the Holidays: Tree Cutting,” January 2020
                                          • Chrissy Teigen and Hyundai Genesis kick old luxury to the curb
                                            • Figure 6: Genesis “Going Away Party” Super Bowl Ad, February 2020
                                          • Audi “lets go” with Arya Stark
                                            • Figure 7: Audi “E-Tron Let It Go,” January 2020
                                        • What’s Struggling

                                          • UK cracks down on Volkswagen campaign that portrays sexist stereotypes
                                            • Figure 8: Volkswagen E-Golf Campaign, August 2019
                                        • The Four Pillars of Female Automotive Loyalty

                                            • Trust
                                              • Transparency
                                                • Understanding
                                                  • Reliability
                                                  • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                    • Women follow the same purchasing timeline as the general population
                                                      • Women want to be actively involved in the car purchasing process
                                                        • Most women haven’t reported an awful car purchasing experience
                                                          • Automakers fail to be seen as female-friendly
                                                            • Women feel underrepresented and ignored by OEMs
                                                            • Female Car Purchasing Process

                                                              • Over half of women plan to purchase within the next three years
                                                                • Figure 9: future vehicle purchase timeline, January 2020
                                                              • Younger female consumers show more immediate need for a new vehicle
                                                                • Figure 10: future vehicle purchase timeline, by generation January 2020
                                                              • Miss Independent: Millennial women are purchasing cars without outside input
                                                                • Figure 11: Purchase decision makers, By generation January 2020
                                                              • Most women shop for vehicles with their spouses/partners
                                                                • Figure 12: Sole decision maker vs joint decision maker, January 2020
                                                            • What Women (Car Shoppers) Want

                                                              • Female car buyers’ biggest focuses are vehicle price and sale process
                                                                • Figure 13: Wants in their future vehicle, by gender, January 2020
                                                              • Female consumers still don’t want to price haggle
                                                                • Brand Fail: Chevrolet
                                                                  • Brand Success: Hyundai
                                                                    • Roughly four in 10 women want full vehicle cost breakdowns
                                                                      • Figure 14: Car purchasing process wish list, January 2020
                                                                    • Car salespeople need to make consumers feel they’re more than a sale
                                                                      • Figure 15: Grievances against car salespeople, January 2020
                                                                    • Moms want assurance all of their kids’ stuff will fit
                                                                      • Figure 16: Wants in their future vehicle, by parent, January 2020
                                                                  • Female Vehicle Purchasing Involvement

                                                                    • Female car consumers want to be actively involved in the purchasing process
                                                                      • Figure 17: Level of involvement in the car purchasing process, January 2020
                                                                    • Women are more concerned with vehicle type, features and test driving compared to men
                                                                      • Figure 18: Involvement in purchasing a vehicle, by gender, January 2020
                                                                  • Attitudes toward Current Vehicle

                                                                    • Majority of women aren’t having a negative experience with their vehicle
                                                                      • Figure 19: Current female vehicle owners’ attitudes toward their car, January 2020
                                                                    • Majority of women haven’t reported a negative purchasing experience
                                                                      • Figure 20: Top factors of involvement when purchasing a vehicle, by gender, January 2020
                                                                  • Female Brand Perceptions

                                                                    • Foreign auto brands continue to have higher consumer perceptions than domestics
                                                                      • Auto brands not seen as bastions of inclusivity
                                                                          • Figure 21: Perceptions of inclusive auto brands, January 2020
                                                                        • Toyota and Honda are highly regarded among female consumers
                                                                          • Figure 22: Perceptions of Toyota and Honda, January 2020
                                                                        • Consumers struggle to identify any auto brand as female-friendly
                                                                          • Figure 23: Perceptions of female-friendly auto brands, January 2020
                                                                        • Four in 10 female consumers feel auto brands aren’t transparent
                                                                          • Figure 24: Perceptions of transparent auto brands, January 2020
                                                                        • Chevy is the most reliable brand in the eyes of moms
                                                                          • Figure 25: Perceptions of reliable auto brands, by parental status, January 2020
                                                                      • Airing of the Female Vehicle Grievances

                                                                        • Female consumers report instances of dealership “mansplaining”
                                                                          • Figure 26: Instances of harassment at dealership, January 2020
                                                                        • Four in 10 women believe automakers ignore women
                                                                          • Figure 27: Perception of automakers ignoring women, January 2020
                                                                        • Half of consumers think OEMs have outdated views of women
                                                                          • Figure 28: Perception of automakers having outdates views of women, January 2020
                                                                        • Lack of female presence in car commercials doesn’t go unnoticed
                                                                          • Figure 29: Female representation in car commercials, January 2020
                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                        • Data sources
                                                                          • Sales data
                                                                            • Fan chart forecast
                                                                              • Consumer survey data
                                                                                • Direct marketing creative
                                                                                  • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                    • Abbreviations
                                                                                    • Appendix – The Consumer

                                                                                        • Figure 30: Female preference to purchase at dealerships, January 2020

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