AutoPacific Study Reveals Rise in Consumer Demand for Advanced Safety, Autonomous Driving Features

Nov 12, 2015, 08:00 ET from AutoPacific

TUSTIN, Calif., Nov. 12, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- A recent study by automotive research and consulting firm AutoPacific reveals consumers are placing higher importance on safety features while shopping for a new vehicle, and future demand for driver assistance safety features is rising. The 2015 study, conducted annually since 1994, is comprised of responses from over 66,000 new vehicle buyers to AutoPacific's New Vehicle Satisfaction Survey.

"Safety has always been important to consumers, but as we've seen more advanced safety features come to market, we have also seen an increase in the percentage of consumers who rate safety features of high importance when shopping for a new vehicle," says AutoPacific Vice President Dan Hall. In the 2015 study, 90% of consumers rated safety features as very or extremely important when shopping for a new vehicle, up from 88% in 2014 and 82% in 2013. Safety features now ranks 6th in importance among 62 vehicle attributes, behind reliability, driver's seat visibility, vehicle's ride, durability and handling.

Advanced Safety Features Gain Traction

In correlation with the increase in importance of safety features, consumer demand for advanced safety features on their next vehicle has also risen over the past few years, according to AutoPacific's Future Attribute Demand Study (FADS), a component of the New Vehicle Satisfaction Survey. The study measures consumer demand for over 100 features on their next vehicle, while also measuring next vehicle purchase intentions such as segment, price and engine type.

"AutoPacific's 2015 survey gauged consumer demand for 9 different driver assistance safety features. These are features like active blind-spot detection or collision warning with auto braking, that allow the vehicle to take action, or warn the driver, in certain situations," says Hall. "Consumer demand for 7 of the 9 features has increased over 2014."

What about Autonomous Driving?

"Driver assistance safety features are a stepping-stone to autonomous driving and have been well received by consumers," says Hall. "We're seeing that same dynamic with semi-autonomous driving features, but consumers aren't quite ready for fully autonomous driving." Consumer demand for auto-pilot highway cruising (31%), parking (22%) and traffic jam assist (16%) have all risen since their introduction to AutoPacific's survey in 2014. Full auto-pilot driving has also risen, up 2% points, but remains relatively low in overall demand (11%).

Top 15 Features Wanted by New Vehicle Buyers in 2015


% Consumer

% Change from

Power Driver's Seat



Heated Front Seats



Active Blind-Spot Detection System



Easy-to-Clean Seat & Floor Materials


New in 2015

USB Ports



Built-In Navigation System



Heated Windshield (auto fog prevention)



Power Front Passenger Seat



Backup Collision Intervention/Auto Stop



Leather Seats



Side Mirror Turn Signals


New in 2015

Hidden Storage for Computer/Purse



Voice-Activated Controls (phone, audio, climate)



Bluetooth Streaming Audio



Push-button Ignition



About AutoPacific
AutoPacific is a future-oriented automotive marketing and product-consulting firm. Every year AutoPacific publishes a wide variety of syndicated studies on the automotive industry. The firm also conducts extensive proprietary research and consulting for auto manufacturers, distributors, marketers and suppliers worldwide. Company headquarters are in Tustin, California, with an affiliate office in the Detroit area. Additional information about AutoPacific and the Future Attribute Demand Study (FADS) can be found on AutoPacific's websites: and

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SOURCE AutoPacific