Skip to comments.Generation Y Giving Cars a Pass
Posted on 09/21/2010 8:39:16 AM PDT by Gordon Pym
Generation Y Giving Cars a Pass The generation gap is a growing, long-term headache for automakers.
Buzz Up! By Jim Ostroff Selling cars to young adults under 30 is proving to be a real challenge for automakers. Unlike their elders, Generation Yers own fewer cars and dont drive much. Theyre likely to see autos as a source of pollution, not as a sex or status symbol.
Motorists aged 21 to 30 now account for 14% of miles driven, down from 21% in 1995.
Theyre more apt to ride mass transit to work and use car sharing services -- pioneered by Zipcar -- for longer trips. And car sharing choices are expanding, with car rental firms moving into the market, making it convenient for young folks to rent with hourly rates and easy insurance. Connect by Hertz, for example, is rolling out its car sharing services in the New York metropolitan area, with plans to eventually expand them to around 40 college campuses nationwide.
(Excerpt) Read more at autos.yahoo.com ...
I imagine another reason is that Obama’s economy is not producing the private sector jobs needed to employ said generation.
>>Theyre more apt to ride mass transit to work and use car sharing services<<
Or leach of their parents and drive Mom’s car.
Many in this generation are not so good at getting or holding jobs anyway, so no surprise they are not driving much.
My 22 year old nephew just bought a bright lime green Dodge Daytona Charger, we were all sort of shocked because he didn’t seem particularly interested in cars before that. Glad he is bucking the trend.
You can’t tinker around with the cars of today like you could ‘back in the day’ - other than putting on nifty wheels, fat mufflers and a rad sound system - you aren’t fiddling with the motor, etc.... You pretty much have to buy them 100% rolling and take them to the dealer when the lights go off...
Well, you don’t really need a car to 1) travel to that job you don’t have. 2) get around in the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan (transportation will be provided for you). So, those two things could be the cause of the drop in that demographic.
And with his own hard earned money. Good kid, Uncle proud.
Instead of Nissans they drive Nintendos.
Yes, and the schools have replaced shop class with environmentalism but at the root is the destruction of the American culture and the destruction of the masculine virtues of strength, courage, honor and the ability to lay a forty foot strip of rubber.
Especially after Cash For Clunkers eliminated a slew of "experienced" automobiles from the market.
Add that to the need to drive to a job is not there, because there is no job, shake and serve, voila! Lousy auto sales!
Back in the day, we had our heads under the hoods of our cars primarily because our cars were pieces of fecal matter. Generally they were American made, unreliable, poorly designed vehicles that had a life expectancy of 80k miles. We expected to overhaul the engine and replace the tranny before 100K miles. The waterpumps had to be replaced around 20K miles, the plugs and points were a 8-10K mile chore.
So, we learned to fix our cars, because we had to. Then Japan came and made a car/truck that was cheaper and ultr-reliable. Years passed and now Japanese cars are more expensive - but generally far more reliable than their American counterparts.
So, the kids can now buy a 8yr old car with 70K miles on it; and have a reliable car they can expect to drive for the next 200K miles before any major expense is incurred. So, instead of dropping $20+K on a new car; they are buying a used car for $5-15K.
But, our tax dollars have also created mass transit that was not available when we were young. So, instead of dropping that $5-15K for a car; the kids can get where they want to go buy riding a bus, or taking a subway. These are alternatives we didn’t have. We either got a car, or we stayed home. To our generation, the car was ‘freedom’.
The times are a changing.
Not buying it. The new Mustang is awesome and I’m a woman and old!
When you don't know anything about the basics of how things work, how to fix things, what works and what doesn't, the government can tell you what lightbulbs to buy, what toilets to have, what appliances you can/should have, what cars you need and so on. Frankly, most of these no-learners will be weeded out in the big depression that is coming.
first- who can afford a decent car any more? the 20-30 somethings who have a mortgage worth of college debt and a job that pays little more than what many jobs pay for entry level just can’t afford it, and the vehicles they make anymore just don’t last.
also, the first car i had i could change out just about anything short of the engine in under a half hour, and could do any work by myself, but this new crap, OMG. everything is so crammed in and out of place just changing the belt is a labour intensive job. heck, alot of these cars anymore you have to just about pull then engine to just change teh plugs! and with all the electronics and sensors, there’s so much that can go wrong its not funny.
and its not just the youngsters. i got a call from a mid-forties friend who had a flat- she had no idea what to do.
Exactly, Self reliance or bureaucratic serfdom
I live in a college town and have observed a copious quantity of Camaros, Challengers and Mustangs. And before I retired last May, I noticed the new engineering hires at my company were driving porches and vettes.
“Or leach of their parents and drive Moms car.”
We have a winner, thanks to all for playing. Johnnie has some lovely parting gifts for all of you backstage.
One more nail in the coffin of Government Motors; I hope they bury that company soon. I’m with the new generation at least in the sense that I will never ever buy anything made by GM or Chrysler. When they accepted my tax dollars against my will, they became like any other thief (individual or corporate), and I will only deal with a thief when compelled to do so at gunpoint.
“You cant tinker around with the cars of today like you could back in the day - other than putting on nifty wheels, fat mufflers and a rad sound system - you arent fiddling with the motor, etc.... You pretty much have to buy them 100% rolling and take them to the dealer when the lights go off...”
au contraire mon ami. I am just about to order the following aftermarket parts for my 2008 Shelby GT500: Upgraded supercharger, handling package(suspension), larger heat exchanger with electric fans, larger throttle body, 3.73 gears, axle-back exhaust and short-throw shifter.
Poor people tend to buy fewer cars, and a lot fewer new cars.
Remember that poverty can be ranked not just in employment and savings, but in debt as well.
Say someone has a good, entry level job at $36k. Half of that money, or $18k, is lost to taxes and FICA. Half of their net $18k goes to rent, leaving them with $9,000 they can spend each year on what they want, like food.
Oh, yes, and they also carry $80,000 in student loans that must be paid off.
They’ll take the bus, thanks. For the next 20 years. And they probably won’t be buying a house with a fat mortgage. Many will choose to not even get married or have children, because they are horrified of the idea of what would happen to them if they lost the meager income they have.
So they will just curl up in a ball in their apartment, work, and pray that they don’t end up a government caused hobo.
Car insurance is a huge bite out of the budget for young kids. My family it is the largest payment we have, even over housing.
Kids today don’t have jobs that can pay this. They live at home with mom and dad and can borrow the car. When the economy ticks up again, they’ll buy.
People can talk about mass transit and being green all they want, but only a car gives you freedom.
Silver lining: Less people in my way when I have to go to the city for a few days.
The author is WAY off base with his theyve all gone green conclusion. Theyve all been cash-for-clunkered. The CFC program has resulted in doubling the price of cars people in that young demographic would ordinarily buy. Then, on top of that, their insurance will be through the roof too. They might have afforded the car at half the cost and the insurance as well; but not both. This problem is right at Obamas feet.
Oh, the cost of used parts has more than doubled as well; thanks to CFC.
>>Especially after Cash For Clunkers eliminated a slew of “experienced” automobiles from the market.<<
Truth be told!
I had a great minivan with 80,000 miles on it. We bought it in 2005 (used salvage title) and had planned on having my daughters drive it while mom got a little cheapie rollerskate type.
That was until the hit and run driver destroyed it (thank you Jesus, I came through with only some airbag bruises). We went out looking for another van. Holy Moly, not a single one out there less than 12,000 with less than 100,000 miles on it.
I now have a cute little PT Cruiser. For some reason they didn’t fall into the “Cash for Clunkers” destruction. There is nothing out there.
In the coming sick nobama-world no one will be able to afford a car. It will be like in the old 60’s B movie, Americathon, where everyone lived in their cars and walked around in leisure suits. Thi has nothing to do with enviro-green, it has to do with no money-green. nobama is a destroyer of our society. nobama is our current plague.
I’m a wiener!
Look around- how many youth do you know that understand anything requiring mechanical skills, or basic upkeep on a house, or anything likeunto. They do not have the logical skills, nor the interest, and in many cases no one around to teach them. They don’t even know they don’t know anything. They have their baggy falling off pants, their iPods etc which they don’t have a clue what makes them work-and they are happy.
It just plain costs more than it used too....sheesh!!
cars also cost money...
which implies you have a job...
which can pay for more than your food & shelter.
shortly, having a car... any car... will be a sign of the rich.
I think it actually started with my generation. My only sibling who was born in the late 1940’s, 18 years my senior was and is a car nut, and apparently so where his peers. I never was car minded and neither were my friends growing up. I own an SUV, but to me it’s nothing more than a way to haul bicycles around and a way to get to work if it’s too wet or cold to ride a bicycle or my Harley.
I see a lot of bashing of today’s youth with respect to their inability to handle a lot of manual tasks (e.g., car repair and maintenance). Perhaps it’s the average age of the FR poster that makes it appear as if the attacks are aimed at today’s youth, I’m not sure. But as a 20-something, I can tell you the following:
- A lot of newer cars are sufficiently well-made that maintenance needs are reduced in general.
- Virtually all newer cars carry good warranties with higher mileage limitations, so why would I do myself what is covered under warranty?
- More cars (granted they tend to be luxury, but even this is filtering down to more mainstream cars) have normal maintenance and wear and tear items built into the price of the car, so again, why would I change or replace something routine on my own dime and time when I’ve already paid for it in the price of the car?
- Cars are far more electronically controlled today than they used to be. My BMW doesn’t even have a dipstick to check the oil level if I wanted to.
And lastly, to those who would still think today’s youth are useless in this area, I suggest you not mention your opinion of us while we’re fixing your computer for the umpteenth time. I do believe I’ve fixed my dad’s computer far more times than he helped me to fix my first car =)
That's nonsense. I don't maintain my car. I pay other people to do that for me. Of course I could mow my own grass, but I have a teenager to do that for me. When he tells me that the mower doesn't work, I put in the back of the aforementioned SUV and take it to get it repaired. Ditto for the home. When something needs fixing, there are people far more qualified than myself ready for hire. I'm in no way a ward of the state. If anything, I'm an economic engine.
I was 30 before I bought a car and drove regularly. I lived in an urban area, close to work, had a crappy income, but was able to save a lot of money. A group of us took turns renting a car quarterly for getting to a Sam’s Club, outlet mall shopping, taking a day trip etc. Timing it correctly, rental specials made this really attractive.
As we moved on with life, got better jobs, homes in the suburbs, etc. we bought cars. I knew a few couples that kept to one car.
Depending on how you live, this can be a huge money saver for some one that is young.
The skill set for tinkering is different, but with a cheap ODBII reader, it’s still possible to work on your own car. If anything, I think it’s easier to work on new cars since you don’t have to do things like synchronize carbs.
Hell, I’m 47, and last Summer it was upgrade time so I started with shiny new cases, liquid cooling units, video cards, processors et al, and built 4 computers from scratch, ran Cat5 (We’re gamers, wireless doesn’t cut it) seamlessly through the walls into 5 separate rooms, and had a full blown LAN party with a dedicated server going all before lunch. Technical savvy isn’t necessarily reserved for the young.
I boosted the power/efficiency of my car:
Replace paper air filter with K&N re-usable = > mpg
Replace factory muffler with high-perf = > mpg
Mobil 1 oil and extra-long life filter = > mpg
Performance rims and tires (50psi) = > mpg
Remove backseats for less weight = > mpg
Insulate air intake (cooler air has more oxygen)
Manual trans. = 10% more power/efficiency
So there are steps the avg. person can take to improve mpg and hp. My PT with a 5-speed can smoke the tires off with only the above mods.
“I suggest you not mention your opinion of us while were fixing your computer for the umpteenth time”
Computers are not as fun to fix as cars. Plenty of geezers can fix both.
Shouldn’t you be on BookSpace or MyFace or something?
Oh, and about that BMW.....you future wife will make you sell it to buy diapers - so you’ll need to get something cheaper to get you back and forth from your first and second job you’ll be working to pay for all these old-folk entitlements.
(he-he just kiddin’ around....)
Oh, I know that’s true — plenty of people older than me at work who are true electronic experts (engineers and the like, whereas I’m just a savvy computer user mostly). And I’m glad to hear that the passion for gaming and custom builds doesn’t fade as time goes on!
Heh, I’ve already been warned by one former BMW-driving, now minivan-driving colleague about that...
Wow, great attitude. With friends like you, who needs enemies?
Well heavens, that wouldn’t be because their father never taught them any of it?
If you want kids to exhibit these behaviours you have to teach them. I am slowly learning, but no thanks to my dad, who preferred not teaching me anything about cars or mechanics.
My dad was the same way, but I learned whatever I didn’t know and wanted to know by myself, or better yet - asked someone. There is a difference between wanting to know and not caring. With the web today, there isn’t an excuse for not having resources for virtually any maintenance issues.
If you buy this, you’d need to be prepared to get taken on virtually every common service maintenance cost there is. Probably just like BMW where they, for example, charged about $125 to change a front left turn bulb on my wife’s X3/X5 (whatever that damned money pit is)..... You actually had to take the whole headlight assembly out of the vehicle to change a $1 bulb.
I had my truck in for tires and he got to alignment and said you need 4 wheel thrust alignment....I asked him how exactly they were going to align the rear wheels of a truck with rear-wheel drive and a differential/axle, etc? No reply.....the difference in cost was $30.....
I wonder how many are the “failure to launch” group, of course they’re not buying cars, they’re using mom and dad’s to do whatever it is they do that’s not work.
It’s one thing when some young people criticise other young people for not knowing something they tried to learn themselves.
It’s quite another for older folks to criticise young people when they dropped the ball teaching us. If kids in general aren’t learning it, chances are their parents aren’t teaching them.
I'm not specifically criticizing young people per se here. It goes for everyone that can still move around by themselves.... willful ignorance is not generational.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.