J.D. Power: Smaller cars offering equal experience for drivers

July 26, 2012 12:00 AM

A recent study by J.D. Power finds that drivers who are "downsizing" their current car by trading in for a smaller vehicle are not necessarily getting a downgraded experience, reports MSNBC.

In the past, it was typically thought that trading for a compact car meant giving up power, features and overall luxury. Nowadays, with more drivers seeking high-MPG vehicles and hoping to save money, automakers are offering the same experience in a slightly smaller box.

The 2012 APEAL study focuses on consumer satisfaction and what types of cars appeal to buyers. The segment with smaller cars is on the rise in terms of satisfaction, with 27 percent of consumers reporting they're going to "downsize" their current car. Meanwhile, only 13 percent are considering moving to a bigger vehicle, with the rest staying in the same segment.

"The average compact car today is as good as the midsize car a person might now be trading in," Dave Sargent, J.D. Power's director of global automotive operations, told the news source.

Of course, buyers don't necessarily have to be "downsizing" constantly. With regular vehicle maintenance like oil changes, drivers can keep their current cars on the road for years.

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