CSM Worldwide released a new report shows that size still matters to Americans.
MSNBC reports that persistently high gasoline price have spurred automakers to make plans to introduce tiny cars into the U.S. market, beginning early next year, when Mercedes Car Group plans to begin selling Smart models.
American consumers are not sold on small, fuel efficient cars. Dave Terebessy, an automotive analyst at CSM, said American buyers are likely to avoid cars that are smaller than the subcompact vehicles already on the U.S. market such as the Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris.
American consumers, he said, will forfeit a few miles per gallon rather than buy a car less than 150 inches in length, about the size of the Mini Cooper.
Fewer than 100,000 minicars will be sold annually through 2013, according to CSM, while annual sales of subcompacts like the Fit and Yaris are expected to rise from an estimated 300,000 in 2007 to over 550,000 by 2013.
source: The AIADA newsletter