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Monday, June 20, 2011

Higher gas prices did not compel hybrid consideration as expected

During a symposium talk last Friday, AutoPacific President George Peterson explained that, “Small car and hybrid consideration is not tracking anywhere near the rate of the price of fuel as it did in 2008.”

Earlier this year, some hybrids and other small cars were selling at above list prices, driven by climbing gas prices and the fear that there would be shortages of the hottest cars after Japan’s tsunami disaster.

Click here to read more about Peterson’s remarks from Automotive News (subscription required).  He notes that improvement in the fuel efficiency of larger vehicles is one factor that has led more people to remain comfortable with the idea of holding-on to their larger car ways.

Implications:  I’ve written extensively here about The Fuel Economy, fearing that a sustained increase in the price of petroleum could have a domino-effect on inflation.  But for now, that fear seems to have passed.

At your company, are you seeing a windfall of spending in response to falling gas prices this past month?  Are your customers talking about lower gas prices?

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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