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Energy efficiency of cars



An interesting research highlight shows that purchasers of new cars change their preferences when they are informed of the effects of carbon dioxide on the environment.

It has become usual to inform consumers on the energy efficiency of a product so that they can make a wise purchase. It appears that the information content generates different responses from consumers depending on what it refers to.

For example, in the United States, the information on vehicle efficiency is provided as grams of carbon dioxide per mile. However, that information lacks a context that would allow the consumer to make a sensed interpretation. It may also affect its purchase choice.

Hence, the research work has studied the willingness-to-pay for cars by individuals by presenting them different information. When the information is communicated in gram per mile, it has a negligible influence on car purchasers.

Yet, when the information provides a context, it has an influence nine times stronger than the gram per mile. And it becomes thirteen times stronger when the context refers to the climate and energy policy targets on the reduction of emissions.


Read further

Daziano, Ricardo A., E. Owen D. Waygood, Zachary Patterson, Markéta Braun Kohlová (2017). "Increasing the influence of CO2 emissions information on car purchase." Journal of Cleaner Production, 164: 861-871.