Corporate / Design & Technology

A look at “green consumption” patterns in the 21st century February 1st, 2008

Jung-Ae HwangBy Jung-Ae Hwang
Assistant Manager
Trend Research Team

Green consumption has become widespread in all facets of our lives. In line with this trend, there is growing interest in environmentally friendly cars. While “environmentally friendly” is a familiar term, “green consumption” is lesser known and may take various forms. We classified green consumption patterns into six categories.

① An “environmental enhancer” tries to consume products that do not generate pollutants under the belief that active efforts should be made to protect and improve the environment. Natural burial, like under trees, is a good example of practicing environmental stewardship until the very end.

② A “health-oriented consumer” seeks to protect oneself and one’s family from environmental pollution. The use of an air purifier to create a clean home indicates that a person is sensitive to issues that directly affect his/her health and the wellbeing of family members.

③ A “mental-oriented consumer” derives satisfaction by moving away from a polluted setting and creating healthy surroundings. Specifically, the person may choose interior designs or furniture featuring nature as the motif for the home and office.

④ A “trend observer” perceives environmental awareness as a trend, and either sets or follows the green movement. London designer Anya Hindmarch’s “I’m not a plastic bag” is an example in which environmental awareness is being used as a fashion icon.

⑤ A “passive adapter” consumes green products and services not for their environmental values, but for other reasons such as functionality, design and price.

⑥ An “eco-fatigue consumer” refers to a person who has become weary and averse amid diffusion and differentiation of environmental values. This can be seen as an anti-trend amid expansion of the green movement.

So how does each consumption group respond to environmentally friendly cars? Environmental enhancers may prefer eco-friendly vehicles as a means of reducing pollution, while trend observers may try to use the cars to make a fashion statement. Passive adapters may choose green cars for their design or fuel efficiency. On the other hand, health- and mental-oriented consumers may base their decisions on the car’s interior rather than environmental technology.


Environmental values incorporate both functional and emotional aspects. That’s why efforts are being made to develop green cars that provide environmental technologies while at the same time stirring human emotions.

The eco-cee’d, slated for launch in Europe at year’s end, is expected to do just that –provide integrated environmental values that satisfy the underlying desires of today’s green consumers.

  • Patrick

    yay glad to hear the eco ceed is going into production

  • Ian Beavis – Vice President Marketing – Kia Motors America

    Excellent story that should get everyone thinking of how we can satisfy these divergent agendas

  • Pingback: A look at “green consumption” patterns in the 21st century | KIA-WORLD blog()

  • Wiseman

    Glad to read this article and know what Kia is doing to save our planet.

  • Mulingoni


    I just want to enquire as to when are you going to supply Kia Ceed to the South African market.

  • I’m affraid Kia will not bring the cee’d to South Africa or anywhere else, except of Europe! The vehicle was developed only for European market.

    But South Africa will most probably get a Spectra successor, currently developed under the TD project name.
    Is Spectra avaliable at SOuth African market?

  • Hi, himi!

    The TD will be available in South African market and it will hit the global market late this year.

  • Lukhona

    the world is in our hands. if we want our future generations to live comfortably we have to put our heads together now, and aim to change the world TODAY

  • I really like you site. Keep up good work

  • This topic is quite hot in the net right now. What do you pay attention to when choosing what to write about?

  • Pamela (Korea)

    Hello Six Pack — As you can see from the varied postings on the blog and the numerous people who contribute, it’s fair to say that this blog reflects the voice of those of us working within the organization. Since we all have our own specializations and keep our eye of consumer trends related to our various departments, we want to write about what bloggers are interested in. (That’s the goal, anyways! How are we doing?! :)

    The eco issue is especially important to Kia Motors, too, as we’re striving to actively develop state-of-the-art eco-friendly cars for future commercialization that meet with consumer demand. Our vehicles are strong in fuel-efficiency but we’re now proceeding with alternative technologies like the Idle Stop-and-Go (ISG), hybrids, LPIs, fuel-cells, etc…

    We already have a lot of these technologies available in Europe and later this year we’ll see more countries with availability.

  • Fabian

    Hello, I am really interested into the eco_c’eed. Please tell me when it will be available in Austria.

  • Pamela (Korea)

    Fabian — Are you referring to the ISG equipped cee’d or the hybrid?

    In the case of ISG, they are already available in many markets in Europe. We recommend you check with your nearest Kia dealer in your area.

    For the cee’d hybrid, our current plans are for introduction in 2012 for Europe as a gasoline electric hybrid.

    Hope that helps!

  • It is a poor dog that’s not worth whistling for.

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