Despite growing traffic, Chinese demand for autos still high

16:55, September 08, 2010      

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Though serious congestion in cities regularly brings traffic to a standstill, Chinese people still seek to buy cars. A survey on more than 1,500 respondents conducted by the Social Survey Center of China Youth Daily last week shows that more than 60 percent of respondents plan to buy cars, including 18 percent who plan to do so in the near future.

More than 32 percent plan to buy cars over the next five years. The statistical data did not include those (16 percent) who have already bought cars, and only about 21 percent specified they will not buy cars.

Among the respondents, 42 percent are the post-80s generation and 34 percent were from the 1970s generation. More than 40 percent come from the small and medium-sized cities, 25 percent from provincial-level capitals and 18 percent from municipalities.

Motivation for car purchases

The survey shows that 59 percent agree that the most important reason for car purchases is to make daily trips more convenient, and 27 percent said the most important reason is to avoid the crowded and awful environment on buses. More than 24 percent said it is because of low and acceptable car prices.

Is a car indispensable in life?

According to the survey, 25 percent of respondents who plan to buy cars said because those around them own cars, they should buy cars as well, and another 25 percent said if they own a car, they will gain face.

Su Yin, a doctoral student in psychology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said a friend of his that works in the medicine business recently purchased a car worth 300,000 yuan despite the fact that he could only afford a 200,000 yuan one.

Su said his friend did this because when he has meetings with doctors, many of them first assess his economic strength by whether he has a car and the type of car he drives before finally deciding whether to continue business talks with him.

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