Each year the J.D. Power’s annual ownership satisfaction survey is done and Lexus has topped the charts for the 11th year in a row. That is certainly outstanding.
Brands and makes of cars are ranked on a 1000 point scale, with the Lexus scoring 845 to beat fellow Japanese rival Honda (833) and European brands Skoda and Jaguar both scoring 825. BMW’s Mini ranked fifth, with a score of 822. The industry average was 794.
At the other end of this review scale were two General Motors-owned brands, Vauxhall (763) and Chevrolet (766). Suzuki (764), Peugeot (771) and Mitsubishi (773) rounded out the bottom five.
Honda definitely did well, with the Jazz and Accord topping their respective classes (small and upper medium). Lexus’ IS range topped the compact executive class, beating BMW 3-Series and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. In the lower medium class it was the Skoda Octavia and BMWs 5-Series (luxury) topped the luxury class.
The J.D. Power study measures levels of satisfaction across four criteria with different weighting for each condition. The most important aspect is vehicle appeal, at 37 percent, which encompasses performance, design, comfort and features; quality and reliability accounts for 24 percent; ownership costs make up 22 percent, and include fuel consumption, insurance, servicing/repair and dealer service satisfaction. The results are based on the answers of 16,500 participants after an average of two years ownership, so the survey really is on 2009 models and older, so the low scoring brands and models may actually be better in 2011, than they appear.
The study, which was conducted in conjunction with UK magazine What Car?, also found that owners are becoming increasingly switched on to vehicle design and pay closer attention to quality issues than ever before.
“It’s great news that people are more satisfied with their cars than ever, and it proves that car makers are getting things right more often,” says magazine editor Jim Holder. “Lexus tops the study with outstandingly reliable cars and dealer back-up that is truly exceptional.”