Indian Automobile Customers Willing to Stretch Budget for Safety: Mobility Outlook Survey

14 Dec, 2021 15:33 IST|Sakshi Post

Making safety features mandatory has had a positive influence on awareness of safety features.

Respondents who are willing to consider purchasing a vehicle with a 4 or 5-star safety rating for their next purchase

Readiness to pay extra for improved security features noticed

Mumbai: Mobility Outlook, a brand of CarTrade Tech, has released a new survey titled "Indian Consumers' Safety Behaviour and Perception of Vehicle Security". The survey explores Indian customers' automobile purchase habits as well as their attitudes towards safety, security, and associated technology. Mobility Outlook is India's first and only platform that takes a holistic approach to the mobility industry, offering insightful perspectives on the entire mobility ecosystem. Almost 270,000 responses from all across the country were gathered and analyzed. Frost & Sullivan, Mobility Outlook’s validation partner, subsequently conducted a comprehensive analysis.

Making safety features mandatory has had a positive impact on safety feature awareness as most of the respondents were acquainted with vehicle safety features. The ABS, airbags, roll-over mitigation, and other safety features were familiar to the responders. The finding's revelation that 1/3 of respondents were uncertain about safety features in their current vehicle demonstrates a dearth of effective marketing and awareness campaigns. When asked about safety features they would consider for their next purchase, the vast majority picked critical safety features, with only 16% stating "not particular".

According to the findings, the majority of the respondents were aware of vehicle safety ratings. The fact that 27% of respondents were unaware of safety ratings is grounds for serious concern. When asked what a higher safety rating means to them, most of the respondents said it means more safety features on vehicles and better occupant protection. 45% of respondents felt new vehicles would be safer than used vehicles, regardless of safety ratings, highlighting the need for better communication.

One of the survey's significant outcomes was that 3/4 of respondents preferred to explore 4 or 5-star rated safety vehicles for their future vehicle purchases, and were willing to extend their budget for safety. This finding indicates that Indian customers are becoming more responsible. Safety features should be standard, driving inside city limits does not demand safety features, and there is no value in paying extra for safety features, were among the reasons given by those who were hesitant to increase their budget for safety features. These findings are concerning because they reveal a gap in people's perceptions and associations with safety features.

Many of the respondents appeared to have a good and clear understanding of all of the security features in their existing and new automobiles. Respondents showed a strong inclination to pay extra for improved security features. Improved security features were believed to increase the resale value of vehicles by 17% of respondents. Nearly one-third of respondents mentioned they would be willing to spend more than INR 30,000 on upgraded security features. According to 30% of respondents, security features should be standard in all automobiles. One of the survey's major takeaways was that respondents ranked Tata Motors, Maruti Suzuki, and Honda cars as the vehicles with the most security features.

Commenting on the survey, Mr Banwari Lal Sharma, CEO-Consumer Business, CarTrade Tech, said, "The automotive industry is experiencing an industry transformation, with new security and safety features being introduced and incorporated. At the same time, this may introduce a significant amount of complexity to the customers’ experiences. Hence, the automotive industry and its stakeholders need to understand how customers perceive such advancements. With this survey, we would be able to identify the demographics and places that require the greatest attention in terms of safety and security, as well as the consumers' perceptions and behaviour in these areas."

Owners and intenders of 4 wheelers and 2 wheelers participated in the survey, which was conducted in both metro and non-metro cities. The purpose of the study is to assist industry stakeholders in better understanding customer expectations, perspectives on safety and security technologies, and the factors that influence purchasing decisions in the new normal.

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