Majority of European drivers still prefer combustion engines

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Almost 60 percent of European drivers see a positive future for petrol and diesel engines, according to new research published by Mazda.

The Mazda Driver Project research – commissioned together with Ipsos MORI – polled 11,008 people across key European markets and an average of 58 percent believe there is “a lot of innovation and improvement still to come with petrol and diesel engines.” The figure is as high as 65 percent in Poland and more than 60 percent in Germany, Spain, and Sweden.

The headline results demonstrate that consumers don’t necessarily share the view of many organisations that the internal combustion engine has no role to play in the future of cars.

This is further demonstrated by the fact that 31 percent of drivers “hope that diesel cars will continue to exist” as electric cars become more common with the figure rising to 58 percent in Poland; meanwhile, on average, 33 percent of drivers stated that if running costs were the same as an electric car they would “prefer a petrol/diesel car” – in Italy as many as 54 percent expressed this opinion.

Despite the gathering momentum behind autonomous vehicles, only 33 percent of drivers “welcome the advent of self-driving cars” with the number dropping as low as 25 percent in France and the Netherlands; against this backdrop, Mazda continues to progress its pioneering advanced safety features and Mazda Co-Pilot Concept which uses autonomous driving technologies to give drivers peace of mind at the wheel. Perhaps surprisingly, there is virtually no evidence of greater support for self-driving cars in younger age groups across Europe.


The findings arrive as Mazda ramps up its Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 vision to combine the best of internal combustion engines with effective electrification technologies.

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