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Recent Survey Shows 51% of Americans Consider Their Car Part of the Family

According to a recent survey, 51% of Americans consider their car a part of the family. If given the opportunity, 53% would keep their current car forever.

We car fanatics have a real emotional attachment to our set of wheels. Due to this sentimental bond, 22% of respondents admitted they couldn’t bear to part with their current car. And 24% said the fond memories they’ve created together make them want to keep their trusty ride forever.

But it’s not all about the feels—there are some practical reasons why we’re holding onto our cars like toddlers with their favorite toys. Nearly 60% said their car has been reliable, while 45% credited the great gas mileage.

And let’s be honest, the thought of shelling out for a new car when your current one is still running just fine is enough to make any gearhead’s wallet shrivel. Almost half the respondents said they’d love an upgrade, but their bank account gives a hard no.

The 47% who would not keep their current car said they would look for something different. For some, this included moving to an electric vehicle.

Top reasons car owners would hold cars for as long as possible.

  • Current car is reliable — 58%
  • Gas mileage is good — 45%
  • Lack of financial ability to update — 28%
  • Lots of happy memories with cars — 24%
  • Emotional attachment — 22%

The Rise of the Electric Revolution

Despite our attachment to our current cars, the future seems electric. A whopping 45% of Americans believe EVs are the way of the future, with younger generations leading the charge (69% of Gen Z and 59% of millennials).

“We’re witnessing a shift in car ownership trends, propelled by interest in electric vehicles, especially with younger generations who see driving electric as the way of the future,” said Christopher Streahle, VP of Marketing Meineke Car Care Centers. “Environmentally friendly transit options are on the rise and drivers are also considering something new, making electric vehicles a compelling option.” 

What’s got us so jazzed about electric vehicles? Well, for starters, not having to pay for gas is a significant perk, according to 35% of respondents. And 33% are excited about the environmental benefits, while 29% are eager to reduce air pollution. 

But it’s not all rainbows and charging stations. Some of us are still skeptical, with 66% anticipating higher ownership costs and 41% worried about spending more time at the mechanic.

Top reasons car owners would choose an electric vehicle instead.

  • No gas payments needed — 35%
  • Positive environmental impact — 33%
  • Help in reducing air pollution — 29%
  • Tax credits for purchase from government — 25%
  • Smooth and quick acceleration — 17%
  • Reducing noise pollution — 17%
  • Prefer to charge a battery than pump gas — 13%

The Importance of Trusted Car Care

Speaking of mechanics, 90% of drivers agree that having a trustworthy auto shop is crucial. After all, with all these new-fangled electric cars on the horizon, we’ll need experts who can keep our rides running smoothly, whether they’re gas-guzzlers or battery-powered.

So, if you’re like most of us who consider your car a beloved family member, fear not—you’re not alone in your automotive affection. As the world goes electric, remember to find a mechanic you can trust to keep your set of wheels, gas or not, purring like a kitten.

Meineke commissioned this random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 American drivers between February 29 and March 4, 2024.

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