MAHWAH, NJ (Dec. 16, 2020) In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Americans are prioritizing safety and reliability more than ever in their products and services, according to a new study from Volvo Car USA and The Harris Poll.
Volvo set out to better understand how perceptions of its core pillar, safety, were changing in the midst of unprecedented behavioral shifts driven by COVID-19. Volvo also explored the changing nature of Americans’ daily commuting routines and the heightened roles vehicles serve today, along with the features people want to see implemented in cars of the future. The full results are published in Volvo Reports: Safety First: The Evolution of Driving and Mobility in 2020, the latest in a series of Volvo Reports from Volvo Car USA and The Harris Poll.
“As a brand with a deep-rooted legacy in safety, it was critical for us to uncover how Americans are rethinking their approach to safe behavior, both on-and-off the road,” said Jim Nichols, Sr. Product and Technology Communications Manager, Volvo Car USA. “These findings confirm that safety is more important than ever to Americans in the wake of the pandemic.”
Safety takes on new meaning:
The concept of “safety” has taken on new meaning and added importance in an increasingly complicated world. Americans are re-evaluating their relationships with the outside world, and many are looking at their cars and homes to provide secure protection. For example:
The role of cars during the pandemic:
While the daily commute was once a source of stress for drivers, stay-at-home mandates and prolonged periods working from home have changed this dynamic. Cars are now serving new and different roles for Americans with nearly 8 in 10 even calling them a “lifeline” during the pandemic (78%).
Rise in distracted and reckless driving:
Even with fewer cars on the road, reckless and distracted driving are still major concerns. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently reported a 29% increase in traffic accident death per miles travelled in 2020. Emptier roads have led to a surge in speeding, while the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have driven new stresses and distractions for all.
Americans looking for new types of vehicle “safety” features:
Given a renewed dependency on cars for both protection and escape, Americans have expressed an appetite for new built-in safety features that address health and safety post-pandemic.
Volvo Cars has long been the leader in vehicle safety, driving decades of “world-first” innovations including the three-point safety belt. Invented in 1959, Volvo released its patent on the invention in the name of safety, with the seat belt now credited in saving more than one million lives. It remains the most critical safety feature in today’s cars.
Today, Volvo has continued its mission to create safer roads for all and encourage safer driving behaviors, including a 112mph speed-limit on all new Volvo cars and new active safety technology to combat the dangers of distraction. More information on Volvo’s legacy in safety can be found here.
This research includes two surveys: one that was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Volvo from September 15 to 22, 2020 among 2,002 licensed adults ages 18 and older, and one that was conducted on September 30 to October 13, 2020, among 2,003 licensed adults ages 18 and older. These online surveys are not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
About Volvo Car USA
Volvo Car USA, LLC, (www.volvocars.com/us) is a subsidiary of Volvo Car Group of Gothenburg, Sweden. VCUSA provides marketing, sales, parts, service, technology and training support to Volvo automobile retailers in the United States. For more information please refer to the VCUSA media website at: http://www.media.volvocars.com/us.