Millennials Ditching Cars

NPR reports on a study of attitudes of “millennials” (20-30 year old Americans) toward the car-buying process. ‘While they do still want to own a car … they are thinking about, ‘Do I need a car or not?’ in a way that … 10 years ago we wouldn’t have seen to the same extent. … Nearly any possession you can think of stopped being an ‘of course’…for millennials.”

Comments:

  1. Hmmm... I've heard about such studies, surveys, and reports. And I am well aware that it's not good to generalize from my limited circle (having been chastised for my reports on "poverty" in my extended family). But my son and daughter and all of their friends (well, all of their friends that I know) are ALL about cars. Driving down the road with them, I hear a continuous conversation of "look at that ______, do you like those?" "Yeah, but I'd rather have it with the ______ package." "Yeah, me too, but even that is not as good as the _______."

    Now, admittedly, my son is 19 and so, by the definition above, is not a millennial. But many of his friends are, and they all share a "car-centric" world view. This is, of course, anecdotal evidence from a small portion of Southern California, but it still makes me question such a report.

    • I have heard more than once about young people in Austin not bothering to get a drivers' license until they are past twenty. This seems amazing to me.

      LA is surely an outlier. When I moved to Austin I had a sinking feeling because Texas is as car-dependent as southern California. But Austin is bound and determined to increase downtown density and improve public transportation. And as the article notes, if you are careful you can even manage a good swath of central LA without a car. I've been on that subway system and while it's small for a city of that size, it does connect a fair number of interesting places.

      Whether this is a significant trend or not will be determined if and when the car companies get worried.


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