"Teens usually look for cars that reflect their own style, so at the end of the day, brands that win over teens are the ones that have mastered the art of communicating with this group," said Andy Turton, President of NFO Automotive, a division of NFO WorldGroup specializing in automotive research. "However, even though Ford and Chevy take the top spots for most desired first car among teens, Ford and Chevy probably take the major share because they are seen as solid, reliable and above all, affordable by teens and their parents.”
When teens were asked to rank car brands based on their overall impressions of each brand, Ford and Chevrolet did not rank too well. Foreign luxury vehicle manufacturers' Mercedes Benz and Lexus emerged as the champions, with teens rating them at 8.03 and 7.85 respectively - based on a ten-point scale - while parents gave them a rating of 7.85 and 7.64.
Teens rated import cars, such as Hyundai, Lexus and Mitsubishi higher than did parents, while parents tended to rate domestic brands, such as General Motors, Saturn and Lincoln higher than teens. When it came to brand awareness, domestic brands' Ford and Chevrolet again made it to the top of the list with the highest awareness among both teens and parents.
When comparing female versus male teens, females displayed a preference for smaller import cars, rating brands such as Honda, Hyundai and Volkswagen higher than males. Male teens favored Chevrolet and Jeep. One of the brands that male teens rated higher in preference was Cadillac, with a 6.85 rating compared to females with a 6.50.
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