CHICAGO – In a recent survey conducted by Cars.com regarding gas prices and their affect on consumers' buying and driving habits, 66 percent said they are driving less today because of the record gas prices at the pump, and 76 percent said they are cutting back in other areas of their household budget, with entertainment (81 percent), dining out (80 percent), recreation (67 percent), and groceries (30 percent) being the areas most likely cut.
According to the survey, some consumers say they are willing to sacrifice some creature comforts like vehicle size and acceleration to increase fuel efficiency, but most consumers don't want to pay a lot more for efficiency, and the vast majority (more than 80 percent) believe that the government isn't doing enough to drive fuel-efficiency standards and manufacturers aren't doing enough to make current vehicles more fuel-efficient.
"Unfortunately, gas prices change a lot faster than manufacturers or the government can effectively make changes to bring more fuel-efficient cars to the market," said Cars.com Editor-in-Chief Patrick Olsen. "With gas prices continuing to break records, the changes can't take place fast enough and consumers will continue to be impacted by higher fuel prices."
Many consumers are simply seeking alternatives modes of transportation as a result of the increase in gas prices: 23 percent stated they carpool more, 12 percent said they take public transportation, 11 percent said they bike, and seven percent said they have enrolled in a car-sharing service.
The survey was conducted online for Cars.com by Impulse Research Corp. with a random sample of 1,033 men and women 18 and older who own cars. The survey audience was carefully selected to closely match U.S. population demographics, and the respondents are representative of American men and women 18 and older.