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All throughout automotive history, brand loyalty has been a huge factor in moving a large number of new cars off dealer lots and into consumers’ hands. If you ask any driver on the road today, they probably have a favorite automotive brand, even if they aren’t necessarily 100% loyal to one brand.

Loyalty plays a huge role in developing families of customers for the future. In America today, some consumers have been buying from one automotive brand or even from one specific dealer for decades. With this hard-sewn loyalty, are there any differences in how the older generations and younger generations place their brand loyalty? Autoblog recently performed a study that explored every generation’s favorite automotive brand based on sales. Using these numbers, we can see which brands speak the most to every generation.

A blue Ford logo on a black vehicle.
Ford logo | Getty Images

Older generations still favor cars from American brands

It is harder to pick a much bigger argument in automotive history than the Chevrolet vs. Ford debate. Ever since the 1920s, Chevrolet and Ford have been in heated competition for sales around the world.

With this rivalry making such a splash in American automotive history, it is no surprise that both Chevrolet and Ford are favorites among the older generations. Autoblog reports that Pre-Boomers, those consumers over 75 years old favor the Chevrolet Equinox, Chevrolet Silverado, and the Ford F-Series. Baby Boomers prefer the Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-Series, and Chevrolet Equinox.

Younger Americans prefer cars from Japanese brands

While the older generations seem to prefer American vehicles, the same is not true for younger drivers. While Baby Boomers and Gen X Americans were growing up, Japanese vehicles were still considered imports.

Many Toyotas and Hondas were readily available for Americans in select markets, but most servicing could only be performed by mechanics that specialize in Japanese vehicles. Today, Japanese vehicles are more American than many American-branded vehicles on the road, with many Toyota and Honda vehicles made in America.

The most popular vehicle for the youngest driving generation, Gen Z, is the Toyota Camry, followed closely by the Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic. For younger Millenials, those between 25 and 34 years old, the Toyota RAV4 tops the charts, followed closely by the Ford F-Series, and Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The next generation of brand loyalty

While brand loyalty isn’t necessarily the only driving factor in vehicle sales, it is one factor that keeps consumers coming through the door again and again. When young consumers have a great experience with one brand’s vehicles, there is a huge chance that young consumers will come back to the same brand for their next vehicle.

Due to Toyota’s excellent track record of reliability and value, it is no surprise that their current trend in loyalty among young drivers will get consumers coming through their dealership doors in the near future, and beyond.


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