ARE WE ALWAY GOING TO DRIVE THESE DARN MINIVANS? Apparently!
HONK SURVEY SUGGESTS THAT MINIVAN SALES ARE POISED TO RISE AS US POPULATION AGES
After years of declining sales,minivans may be poised for a comeback.
Though minivans are most often associated with young families, a study by car-shopping website, Honk found an interesting group of minivan owners (13.3% of survey respondents) who had no children at all. Many of these owners were of retirement age and explained that their minivan purchase was influenced heavily by the needs of their multi-generational family and a desire to stay mobile as they aged.
Honk analyst, Matt Cragin notes, “The first wave of the enormous Baby Boom generation is just now reaching retirement age. If even just a fraction of those Boomers choose to go down the same path as the respondents in this survey, minivan sales will rise substantially in the coming years.”
The study highlighted the fact that minivans are well suited to older drivers and aging bodies. With a ride height that’s taller than cars but lower than sport utility vehicles, respondents explained that it’s easy to get in and out of the vehicle. Power sliding doors and rear hatches ease strain when loading cargo and were called out as popular features.
Respondents also explained that the minivan’s upright seating position and large windows helped them to feel more confident and in control of their vehicles. The excellent visibility is especially important for older drivers who tend to narrow their view ahead as peripheral vision fades and backs and necks begin to ache. By reducing the physical strain of driving, minivans help older drivers maintain their mobility and freedom as they age.
“It’s easier to get in and out of and the seating position is old man friendly,” joked one respondent.
The Honk study also found that minivans were considered a vital link that kept older respondents connected to their families. Three rows of seating provide comfortable accommodations for adult children and small grandchildren, allowing the whole family to ride together in one vehicle.
Respondents also noted that the vehicle’s kid-friendly design meant that Grandma and Grandpa were able to pick up the grandchildren and babysit without the hassle of trading cars with Mom and Dad.
Asked why she purchased a seven-seat minivan, one respondent summed up with, “I have five adorable grandkids – ha!”
“Baby Boomers may not resist minivans when the time comes,” notes Cragin. “They were the generation that popularized the vehicle as young parents in the 1980s, after all, “suggesting that many Boomers will feel right at home once they get back behind the wheel.
What do you think? Will you be driving a minivan when you are 80?
Information provided by http://www.honk.com/.
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