Survey Indicates Americans Don't See Energy-Efficient Cars As Solution to Rising Gas Prices

Susan Jones | March 14, 2012 | 10:19am EDT
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President Barack Obama test drives a Chevy Volt on July 30, 2011. (AP Photo)

( - A new survey shows that rising gasoline prices will force changes in the driving habits of American adults, but only six percent of them said they plan to buy a hybrid/energy-efficient vehicle to alleviate pain at the pump.

The online survey, conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of CouponCabin from March 6-8, found that 3 in 4 adults in this country said they are changing their driving habits:

-- 61 percent plan to drive less overall to save money

-- 9 percent plan to carpool

-- 8 percent plan to use public transportation

-- 6 percent plan to buy a hybrid/energy efficient vehicle

Other findings:

More than one-third (36 percent) of adults said they may have to give up something to afford to drive a vehicle.

-- 70 percent said they would dine out less often

-- 64 percent said they'll spend less money on entertainment (concerts, movies, etc.)

-- 37 percent plan to postpone seasonal clothing shopping

-- 22 percent said they'll cancel online or other subscriptions

-- 15 percent plan to cancel cable, satellite or other TV services

-- 12 percent said they'll reduce cell phone usage

-- 5 percent said they'll cancel Internet service

-- (16 percent said "other")

"For many Americans who are just getting back on their feet, rising gas prices can be a tough financial hurdle," said Jackie Warrick, chief savings officer at, which describes itself as a leading online destination for coupons.

The survey, based on the responses of 2,254 adults, reflects the current low demand for electric hybrid vehicles.

General Motors halted production of its Chevy Volt on March 19 for five weeks because of rising inventories. The car, which costs around $40,000, just isn't selling, even though President Obama said he will buy one when he leaves off.

Ford, meanwhile, is now rolling out its all-electric Focus. "We have a limited production run for 2012 and will be increasing production in future model years," the Ford website says.

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