Title: The environmental awareness of car owners: the case of natural gas vehicles in Italy

Authors: Giancarlo Nadin, Glauco Tullio Savorgnani, Marco Besana

Addresses: S.E.GEST.A. – Deparment of Management Science, Catholic University of Milan, Via Necchi, 7-20123 Milano, Italy. ' S.E.GEST.A. – Deparment of Management Science, Catholic University of Milan, Via Necchi, 7-20123 Milano, Italy. ' Talos-am ApertaMente, Via Liberta, 1-20057, Vedano al Lambro, Milano, Italy

Abstract: Sustainable development has become one of the fundamental concepts in our society since we experimented with environmental pollution, global warming, raw materials shortage and, consequently, relative cost increase. In this paper, we try to analyse this matter starting from a particular point of view that has been represented by the great increase of ecological Natural Gas Vehicles (NGV) in the Italian market in the last years. This paper wants to explore the needs and motives which push buyers to change their old car into a bifuel one or convert it for dual feeding. Traditionally, NGVs have always been related to people with low income and a particular social level; buyers of low performance cars and ready to accept many inconveniences as regards gas station service. The findings, based on an exploratory research in the Milan area on 400 NGV owners, depict a new customer profile and highlight the potential hidden values related to the environmental intentions of motorists, which are relevant factors affecting car purchases.

Keywords: environmental awareness; customer behaviour; automotive marketing; natural gas vehicles; NGV; sustainable development; sustainability; Italy; biofuels; customer profile; automobile industry.

DOI: 10.1504/IJATM.2009.026398

International Journal of Automotive Technology and Management, 2009 Vol.9 No.2, pp.209 - 228

Available online: 09 Jun 2009 *

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