Fuel prices affecting driving habits – BCA report
Following the announcement by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) that it has launched a review into whether reductions in crude oil are being passed on to motorists, new research from leading vehicle auction company, British Car Auctions (BCA), highlights motorists' continued worries about the cost of fuel.
Research among more than 4,000 motorists, conducted by BMRB exclusively for the Used Car Market Report, reveals that motorists have been changing their driving behaviour to cut costs and improve their personal motoring carbon footprint. 53 per cent of motorists believe the higher price of fuel will eventually push them into ‘buying a more fuel efficient vehicle’ or change their ‘driving habits’ or both.
Tim Naylor, Editor of the BCA Used Car Market Report commented “BCA’s research clearly shows that motorists are continuing to struggle with increased fuel costs, with 70 per cent of car owners admitting they had taken steps to cut their car operating costs. Many are trying different ways to combat the financial pressures including changing the way they drive (17 per cent drive more slowly to conserve fuel), avoiding heavy braking (16 per cent) and opting for more fuel-efficient models. The findings of this investigation should help motorists especially if it’s revealed that prices are inflated.”
The Used Car Market Report also highlights that during the past year, as response to the increased prices at the pumps, 29 per cent of motorists are now walking more often, while 21 per cent of car owners are cutting the number of car journeys.
Furthermore, BCA’s data suggests that the continuing economic pressure has influenced the type of vehicle motorists want to buy. Top of the shopping list for motorists buying a car is a vehicle with better fuel consumption (27 per cent), followed by and lower road tax (20 per cent). A smaller car (14 per cent) is much more likely to be purchased than a bigger car (2 per cent) in the current economic climate.
“The squeeze on household spending means motorists are looking at different ways of managing their travel costs. Some are deciding to choose slightly older, cheaper cars when they change their vehicle. Others are looking for more economical cars that deliver a better MPG as they try to combat rising fuel costs. We have also seen a decline in the number of multi-car households which suggests families are having to economise with their personal transport needs” concluded Tim Naylor.