Millennials And Car Culture: They Care About Driving, But Not About Driving New Cars

Millennials bring unique attitudes and a different cultural mindset to vehicles than their older peers, but the fact is, they still drive even though they have to abandon text messaging and social media while they do so.

We’ve been seeing plenty of headlines this week about how Millennials don’t like cars and don’t want to drive. The auto industry is sweating because Millennials aren’t buying cars at the same rate that Boomers did in their youth, citing their preference for technology and the Internet over cars. The ultimate question is whether this shift is driven by a new mindset about driving (which will likely not change) or economic conditions (which will likely change). Of course, there’s a possibility that it’s both.

 

Millennials do bring unique attitudes and a different cultural mindset to vehicles, but the fact is, they still drive. But an article in The New York Times cites stats including:

"In 2008, 46.3 percent of potential drivers 19 years old and younger had drivers’ licenses, compared with 64.4 percent in 1998, according to the Federal Highway Administration."

And:

"Forty-six percent of drivers aged 18 to 24 said they would choose Internet access over owning a car, according to the research firm Gartner."

What it fails to note, however, is that new laws restricting licenses for drivers under age 18 took effect during the decade reference, reducing the number of fully licensed teen drivers. As for the 46% of 18-24 year olds who would choose the Internet over driving, that doesn’t reflect the number that would like to do both. What’s more, that figure also means a majority of 18-24 year olds (54%) would choose a car over a computer.

An article in The Atlantic says:

"Growing up in the 'burbs was part of the reason driving was so central to Baby Boomers' lives. Car keys meant freedom. To city dwellers, they mean struggling to find an empty parking spot."

It also notes:

“Surveys have found that 88 percent [of Millennials] want to live in an urban…

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I share my selfies by making it my profile picture.” —Female, 23, IL

It’s time to let go of the stereotype that men hate shopping: men are actually spending about $10 more than women on clothing and accessories each month, according to a new study. Menswear is expected to expand by 8.3% in the next year, 4.1% more than womenswear. Not surprisingly, Millennial guys are approaching their fashion and shopping differently, with males under 35-years-old more likely to purchase athletic and athleisure styles. Younger male consumers are also 27% more likely than those over 35-years-old to be influenced by sales staff. (The Muse)

Second screen marketing was one of the big trends of this Sunday’s big game, and Instagram reports that 38 million users engaged with Super Bowl content 155 million times that day. Social media vendor Engagement Labs looked at likes, comments, and clicks to see which brands were the event’s Insta-MVPs and declared Pokémon, Disney’s The Jungle Book,Squarespace, SoFi, and Acura the top five performers. Pokémon asked viewers to call out all the Pokémon references their ad in the Instagram comments, and The Jungle Bookposted a link to the full movie trailer on Instagram right after airing it on TV. (Adweek

Blend is a texting app “built for Gen Z,” with plans to use their popularity on college campuses to grow into competition for WhatsApp and iMessage. The app was created by two college drop-outs who secured $3 million in funding after the release of a controversial promotional video made the app go viral on the former students’ Michigan campus. Their biggest challenge will be retaining Millennials and teens in the crowded messaging space, and Blend is relying on their “snappy design” and focus on photos and video sharing to get them on top.
(San Francisco News

Millennials know you think they’re narcissistic—and they think so too. New research shows Millennials agree that they are more self-involved than older generations: 18-25-year-olds rated themselves a 61.4 (on a 100-point scale) for narcissism, and rated those 60 years or older at 38. However, older respondents “in particular piled on Millennials for their narcissism, while absolving their own age group,” and those 60 and older ranked Millennials as 65.3 on the narcissism scale, and put themselves at 26.5. Unsurprisingly, the study notes that Millennials don’t appreciate constantly being told they’re narcissistic. (Mental Floss

Millennials are looking for something to talk about on social media, and IfOnly is providing the exclusive experiences they can be proud to broadcast. When we first wrote about the site their target users were those with a lot more to spend, but over the past few months they’ve been adding “amazing but highly accessible” offerings—like playing with pandas at a zoo—for a broader audience, priced at $50-$125 per person. IfOnly believes that Millennials on social media will pave the way to their success: “they’re on social media channels, where it’s not fun to post about a belt but it is fun to [post a picture, saying], ‘Check me out backstage.’” (TechCrunch

Quote of the Day: “I am planning to give an iPhone 6s as a gift for this Valentine’s Day.”

—Male, 31, NY

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