Market Snapshot


A new study reports that safety is a major reason why consumers consider and purchase Xenon or High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlights on their automobiles.

The research was conducted by Brand-Aid Consulting of Wrentham, Massachusetts. In conjunction with R.L. Polk registration data, Brand-Aid surveyed 400 people who drove 2003–2005 model-year vehicles. Two hundred of the owners drove Xenon-equipped vehicles, while the other half drove vehicles with halogen lighting.

Ninety-seven percent of Xenon owners surveyed said they see better with the technology, and the headlights seem to perform better in poor weather conditions, when compared to standard halogen lighting. When asked about specific Xenon performance features, these consumers noted that they felt safer because they saw more of the oncoming road, as well as viewing roadside obstacles sooner. This is not surprising, as existing research shows that seven out of 10 drivers in the United States fear driving at night for reasons related to poor visibility.

"We have strong empirical evidence that shows that consumers appreciate and are loyal to Xenon because of the technology's unparalleled illumination and inherent safety benefits," said Matt Blewett, Xenon Product Manager, OSRAM SYLVANIA. "The technology provides its owners with 70% more light on the road, increasing visibility of many peripheral objects left in the shadows by standard halogen lighting."

The results of the consumer study reveal that nearly all (91%) of current Xenon vehicle drivers are "completely to very well satisfied" with their headlights. Of those polled, 92% indicated that visibility and enhanced safety are the most popular features of the technology. An overwhelming 97% of current Xenon owners said that they would purchase a future vehicle with Xenon technology, and 85% of those surveyed would recommend Xenon headlights to others.

The study reveals that 70% of non-Xenon drivers are aware of the technology and its benefits. The study also reveals that the vast majority (69%) have never driven or have never been a passenger in a vehicle equipped with Xenon headlights. This shows that the majority of non-Xenon drivers form opinions about the technology by only experiencing it from the perspective of on-coming traffic. Despite this lack of first-hand experience as a Xenon-headlight driver, 51% of non-Xenon owners said they believe the technology provides a safer nighttime driving experience.

Source: OSRAM SYLVANIA. (June 12, 2007). "Vehicle Owners Drawn to Xenon Lighting Because of Safety Features, Benefits." OSRAM SYLVANIA press release courtesy of PR Newswire.