When it comes to buying a new car, more than 60% of Middle East consumers say that fuel efficiency is more important than power.
That’s just one conclusion in a survey of thousands of people in eight countries across the Middle East and the Levant which Ford Middle East conducted via Twitter recently. It is the first consumer-oriented research Ford has conducted via social media.
The survey targeted consumers aged 20-35 with interests in automotive, technology, green solutions, and news, from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, Oman, Bahrain, Iraq and the United Arab Emirates. The survey was conducted in both English and Arabic and drew over 19,000 responses.
“We conducted this survey to learn more about what shapes consumers’ decisions when shopping for a new car,” said Crystal Worthem, Ford Middle East & Africa’s director of Marketing. “It’s clear that consumer attitudes are changing to focus on new, cost-effective engines which also deliver the power you want and the efficiency you need.”
When asked about the reasons for prioritizing fuel efficiency, more than 50% of respondents were concerned about high fuel prices. Other top reasons included wanting to save money (25%), and an interest in being more environmentally friendly (15%).
While motorists throughout the region seem sensitive to fuel prices, surprisingly few seem unaware of long-term strategies for saving fuel. Only 27% of those surveyed admit that they consider the total cost of ownership – including fuel costs – when shopping for a new car, while the largest proportion (33%) rate safety and technology features as more important considerations.
That’s not helped by the fact that drivers in the region value performance, with around 20% of all respondents saying the performance was a factor when deciding on a new car. When asked, most drivers (54%) said that powerful cars were fun to drive, were safer (24%) and were a status symbol (22%).
“These insights tell us that today’s consumers are more sophisticated than ever,” added Worthem. “They expect their vehicle to provide excellent fuel economy without compromising the performance they need.”
It’s precisely this need for the combination of fuel efficiency and power that led to the development of the EcoBoost® family of engines. Since 2009, EcoBoost engines have accumulated 10 International Engine of the Year awards including the 2012 Best New Engine, the 2012-2014 Engine of the Year and six consecutive class victories for the 1.0-litre EcoBoost three-cylinder turbo engine.
“EcoBoost gives drivers the power they want and the fuel efficiency they need,” said Worthem. “When driven efficiently, EcoBoost technology is capable of helping owners save on fuel and save money throughout the year. When owners need that extra boost of acceleration or power, the turbo technology is ready to engage.”
What is EcoBoost?
Power and fuel efficiency once sat at opposite ends of the performance spectrum but thanks to Ford’s EcoBoost technology, drivers can now spend more time on the road and less time at the fuel pump.
EcoBoost combines turbocharging, variable valve timing and direct fuel injection with reduced displacement to deliver significant vehicle fuel-efficiency gains over larger displacement engines, without sacrificing vehicle performance.
Ford’s award-winning EcoBoost engines power a wide range of models in the current Ford line-up, including utility vehicles such as Edge, Explorer, Expedition, F-150, and performance models such as the mighty F-150 Raptor, Mustang muscle cars and Le Mans-winning racing cars, like the Ford GT.