December 7, 2007
Toyota ranks highest in retaining customers for second consecutive year, says J.D. Power
Westlake Village, California – For the second consecutive year, Toyota has led the automotive industry in retaining the highest percentage of new-vehicle purchasers, according to a new study by J.D. Power and Associates.
Now in its fifth year, the study measures the percentage of new-vehicle buyers and lessees who replace a previously-purchased new vehicle with another from the same nameplate.
Improving by nearly one percentage point from 2006, Toyota leads by 64.6 per cent in customer retention rankings. Also for the second year, it was followed by Lexus, at 63.0 per cent, and Honda, at 62.8 per cent.
“Toyota’s high customer retention rate is particularly notable, considering that new-vehicle sales have declined in the past year,” said Neal Oddes, director of product research and analysis at J.D. Power. “Toyota maintains its high retention rate by providing high-quality vehicles and service to its existing customers, which in turn generates favourable word-of-mouth recommendations that attract new customers.”
Customer retention rates have remained stable in the industry since 2003, at approximately 49 per cent. However, notable gains for individual nameplates were found at Suzuki, which increased by 19 per cent, and Mazda, up 9 per cent.
Suzuki’s increase over five years, the largest since the study’s inception, is due mainly to increased cargo capacity and higher resale value, J.D. Power said, while Mazda’s increase is due to the styling and quality of its product line, better safety features, fuel economy and seating arrangements.
The study is based on responses from 169,017 new-vehicle buyers and lessees, of which 101,860 replaced a vehicle that was previously acquired new.