Consumers increasingly demand fuel-efficient vehicles

When it comes to buying an automobile, fuel efficiency is a growing concern among U.S. consumers.

When it comes to buying an automobile, fuel efficiency is a growing concern among U.S. consumers. According to a survey released this week by Ford Motor Company and Maritz Research, fuel economy is an important consideration for nearly all vehicle types.

Specifically, the survey found 40 percent of U.S. consumers now view fuel efficiency as "extremely important" when considering a new automobile purchase, and one-third of survey respondents claim it has the "greatest impact" on their next buy.

"Drivers want fuel economy choices - not a one-size-fits-all solution - and Ford is leading the way," said Mark Fields, Ford's president of the Americas. "Customers are telling us clean and green vehicles matter because they are good for people's wallets and good for our planet."

Aside from the surge in demand for fuel-efficient vehicles, the U.S. auto industry seems to be enjoying stronger overall demand in recent months. The economy expanded by a preliminary 2.5 percent during the third quarter, according to the Commerce Department, driven in large part by a resurgence of vehicle sales, analysts pointed out.