Trends can be a bit hard to follow and understand; take the “grunge” look of the 1990s, or the obsession and hype with huge SUVs in the early 2000s. These days green is the hot new trend among the young people, though interestingly enough it is older buyers who are flocking to hybrid vehicles. Apparently Baby Boomers still think of themselves as “hip” and “cool”, as well as wealthy enough to afford a new fuel-sipping ride.
A Baylor University study interviewed more than 300 hybrid car owners over the age of 60, and the results of the study confirm that image is a big part of the buying decision. “The findings suggest that elderly consumers are concerned about how they appear to others when driving a hybrid car,” the study says. “They believe that driving a hybrid car builds a positive self-image of the people who drive them.”
With people ages 50 and older more likely to be environmentally friendly, it is no small surprise that the older generations are buying mroe hybrid cars than younger people. With a price premium attached to hybrids, and a lack of financial mobility among younger people, the only consumers with deep enough pockets to buy hybrids are older. So even though 60% of young buyers want to own a hybrid car, about two-thirds of hybrid car buyers are over the age of 50.
What this means for the cool factor of green cars down the road is anybody’s guess, though Facebook became decidedly less “cool” when older people started signing up. Just saying.