There could be a rude awakening ahead for consumers who are anxious to get their hands on smart automotive technologies.
A new study finds that even when people see certain technologies as "must-have" equipment, their enthusiasm wanes considerably once they see the price tag.
For its newly released "AutoMobility Auto Tech Insights 2019" report, GfK, a research firm in New York, compiled data from more than 1,000 "new-car intenders," people who plan to buy a new vehicle in the next six months.
The study looked at seven key emerging auto technologies: active safety, connected cars, infotainment systems, electric vehicles, autonomous vehicles, wellness solutions and augmented reality.
For connected vehicles, for instance, 40 percent of the intenders called such systems a must-have, but just 18 percent said they would be willing to pay as much as $500 for such technology, which can support navigation systems, Apple CarPlay or electronic payments. The figure falls to 17 percent if the price is between $500 and $2,500, then plummets to 5 percent if the price exceeds $2,500.
The study found a similar pattern for the other smart technologies: Just 7 percent of intenders said they would be willing to pay more than $2,500 extra for an autonomous car.
But GfK found that the lack of acceptance about pricing may stem from a general lack of clarity about some technologies.
Forty-eight percent of intenders admitted to knowing little to nothing about autonomous cars, for example. GfK Commercial Director Tom Neri says that, specifically, people are unclear about the safety and privacy implications of AVs.
Out of the seven technologies included in the study, active safety ranked highest on the must-have list, with 49 percent of respondents expressing a desire to have it. Wellness solutions and augmented reality ranked last, at just 22 percent each.
— Leslie J. Allen