The Auto Channel
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
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Higher Gas Prices Driving Better Car Care

BETHESDA, Md., Dec. 12, 2007; Consumers say that fuel economy is a much more important motivator for vehicle maintenance than five years ago and 54 percent of both men and women feel they are capable of doing some of the work themselves, according to a recent study of motorists by Opinion Research Corporation for the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA).

The biggest jump in consumer car care motivations has been caused by rising gas prices. Sixty-two percent of consumers said fuel efficiency is an important factor today compared with 42 percent five years ago. While saving money at the gas pump experienced the greatest change, dependability (87 percent) and safety (80 percent) still rank higher among consumers and both also rose in importance in the past five years.

"Having a safe and dependable vehicle have long been the top motivational factors influencing consumers vehicle maintenance decisions, but getting better gas mileage is catching up as a driving force," said Kathleen Schmatz, AAIA president and CEO. "We were surprised and pleased by the survey results that showed 54 percent of both men and women motorists felt they were personally capable of performing light maintenance and repair jobs."

Opinion Research Corporation conducted interviews online with 500 people, 21 years of age or older, who are responsible for the purchasing of fuel and the maintenance and repair of the vehicle they drive. The data was weighted according to gender, age and geographic region. The maximum error range is plus or minus four points at a 95 percent confidence level.

For more information on tips and advice for simple vehicle maintenance and care to improve gas mileage, contact the Car Care Council at

About AAIA

AAIA is a Bethesda, Md.-based association whose more than 23,000 members and affiliates manufacture, distribute and sell motor vehicle parts, accessories, service, tool, equipment, materials and supplies. Through its membership, AAIA represents more than 100,000 repair shops, parts stores and distribution outlets.