News and Reviews

Women appear to be much more practical car-shoppers

A new study from iSeeCars found women are more interested in affordable, practical vehicles while men are more interested in performance-based cars that are much more expensive. Willie B. Thomas

Men and women have very different car-shopping habits, according to online car research company iSeeCars.com.

In a recent study, the Woburn-based used car marketplace found Korean-made, affordable vehicles are more likely to be sought after by female car shoppers.

On the other hand, men tend to shop for sportier, performance-based cars.

iSeeCars’ survey looked at over 500,000 consumer inquiries of cars listed for sale on its site during a 33-month period. Inquirers names were categorized as either male or female.

In a statement, iSeeCars CEO Phong Ly said the study found stark differences between each gender’s buying habits.

“The qualities women really want in a car are affordability and practicality, in contrast to the kinds of cars men are most interested in buying,’’ said Ly.

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The Hyundai Tucson, with an average price of $16,722 topped the list of the vehicles that women are most interested in buying.

What Women Want

The company found 10 cars where more than 60 percent of interested buyers were women. The average price of these cars was $14,870 and all were below $20,000.

The Hyundai Tucson topped the list of vehicles that skewed most toward female buyers. iSeeCars found 66.2 percent of inquiries about the Tucson came from women. The Tucson has an average price of about $16,722.

The other vehicles that mostly women are interested in include the Nissan Versa, Volkswagen Beetle, Kia Forte, Ford Fiesta, Kia Sorento, Jeep Patriot, Mitsubishi Outlander, Kia Rio, and Kia Soul.

Ly points out that half of the top 10 vehicles preferred by women are Korean-made brands.

“Women want cars that are fuel efficient, safe, reliable, and affordable,’’ said Ly in a phone interview. “All the Korean makes, compared to Japanese counterparts, hit those marks.’’

He points out that Korean brands get four- to five-star safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and get strong reviews from consumer groups like J.D. Power and Consumer Reports.

Meanwhile, iSeeCars found men are considerably more interested in cars that are more expensive and performance-based, with the Nissan GT-R topping the list.

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What Men Want

Meanwhile, iSeeCars also found 10 cars where more than 90 percent of interested buyers were men. Based in the study’s findings, men are by far more interested in cars that deliver strong performance and are much more expensive.

How much more expensive? According to iSeeCars’ findings, the average price of the top 10 cars men prefer is $49,224, more than three times the average price of the cars women want.

Many of the cars men inquired about are sports cars. But there are also vehicles that are designed for specific driving and work-related needs, including heavy-duty pickup trucks and at least one cargo van.

The car with the highest percentage of male shoppers, the Nissan GT-R, a sports car that gets 500 horsepower, 18 miles per gallon, and has an average price of $80,450, received 99.1 percent of inquiries from men.

On average, men also made up 90.7 percent of shoppers for the BMW M3, Porsche Cayman, Porsche 911, Lexus GS 350, Bentley Continental GTC, Chevrolet Express Cargo, Ford F-350 Super Duty, Cadillac CTS-V, and the GMC Sierra 25000 HD.

These cars range widely in price from $16,433 to $113,666.

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Kelley Blue Book’s best buys of 2016

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Based on these results, Ly says women appear to searching for vehicles that will be a wise investment for everyday use while men are looking for a car that also serves as a “status symbol.’’

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“I think men are all about the flash,’’ said Ly. “They’re buying cars that stroke their egos while women are buying cars to get from point A to point B.’’

Women’s preference in cars can also show that sometimes size does matter. Six of the 10 cars women shop for most are smaller cars, while the other four are small crossovers.

“Size plays a factor in fuel efficiency and affordability and how maneuverable a vehicle is,’’ said Ly. “That tends to play into the decision-making process for women.’’

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