Document Type

Master's Culminating Experience

Publication Date



This project suggests that SUV buyers have significantly different characteristics than other automobile buyers. Drawing data from the Consumer Expenditure Survey for 1998 through 2002 and employing a binomial logistical regression technique, this project identifies the determinants that significantly influence the household’s decision to purchase a new sport utility vehicle (SUV). Market trends (growth in the SUV market or other unmeasured factors), the reference person’s age (the household’s preferences based upon their position in the family life cycle), the reference person’s education level (general household preferences), income (the flow of resources into the household), region (demographic differences and needs based upon region), household size (household resource requirements), reference person’s gender (differences in preference based upon gender), the reference person’s race (differences in racial preferences based upon background), and housing tenure (preferences and the level of assets) are statistically significant determinants in the household’s decision to purchase a new SUV. Household residence (urban versus rural) was not a statistically significant determinant of this decision. Overall, this project suggests that time, income, education level, race, household size, age, location, and housing tenure are the relevant factors for the purchase decision probability of a new SUV.