Do you believe these car buying statistics?

Car races: What your ethnicity says about your vehicle purchases

Do Asian Americans buy more Hondas and Toyotas because “they have a stronger affinity to the various Asian import brands”? Do African Americans care more about “audio/video systems” than “interest rates and credit terms”?

And why is “Toyota is the number one brand that Latino Americans would purchase in the future”?

These are some of the touchy questions posed in a study released yesterday by Strategic Vision, a consulting firm for Fortune 100 companies. It concludes, “Compared to other ethnicities, African Americans, Latino Americans and Asian Americans all report higher incidences of stating that they purchase vehicles that are ‘cool.’

This study raises two questions…

 1. How did they do this? The “ethnic review was based on over 525,000 respondents who self-reported their ethnicity,” Strategic Vision says, proudly pointing out they don’t “rely on guessing ethnicity based on mathematical algorithms.”

2. Why did they do this? Because car dealers want to know. Strategic Vision can tell its clients “what brands lead with which ethnic customers and what it is about those brands, both in product and communications, that lead to the increase in vehicle sales.”

One of the broad strokes Strategic Vision draws is this…

African Americans are more drawn to younger, more energetic vehicles. Latino Americans are looking for modern and powerful perceptions resulting in elegant and sexy imagery, while Asian Americans are more prone to purchase family-oriented, smart and helpful vehicles.

But the company also hedges its bets by saying…

The answer to the question, “Why does race matter when it comes to buying a new vehicle?” isn’t as simple as the question itself. This is because, in general, regardless of race, new vehicle buyers are more similar than they are different.

If there’s any value to customers, it’s perhaps to remember you’re being profiled and judged the moment you walk into a dealership — or even call or email one. And if you fall into one of the following ethnicities, consider that the dealer already has these car buying statistics…

Percent Who “Definitely Would” Consider the Brand in the Future
African Americans Latin Americans Asian Americans
BMW 37% Toyota 44% Honda 50%
Honda 37% Honda 42% Toyota 47%
Lexus 36% BMW 34% Lexus 45%
Toyota 32% Mercedes 31% BMW 41%
Mercedes 32% Audi 30% Mercedes 37%
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