The 2012 Ipsos Quality Awards for Sales and Service experience in the automotive industry have been announced.
The Ipsos Quality Awards were previously known as the Synovate Quality Awards and have been awarded to the industry for the past eight years. They are considered the benchmark in customer experience in the automotive industry.
Top performing passenger car brands this year included Chevrolet, Audi and Volkswagen, while in the light commercial segment, Chevrolet, Isuzu and Toyota have delivered strong performances.
Recognition is given to the outstanding achievers in the following four categories:
- Passenger Vehicle (PC) Purchasing Experience
- PC Servicing Experience
- Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) Purchasing Experience
- LCV Servicing Experience
"There is much to be said of the effort that manufacturers and dealerships have put in over the last year to improve their customers' experience," said Richard Rice, Head of Loyalty research at Ipsos South Africa.
"There have been significant advances in technology, facilities, systems and financing processes. All of these factors play a big role in the overall customer experience, as well as the product itself of course. However, given the complexity of the human interaction during the sales and service transactions, the brands that have focussed on the more ‘personal’ elements are the ones that have done particularly well."
For the second year in a row, Audi took top spot in the PC Purchasing Experience. The top three in the category were very close in terms of score and the category yielded a high average of 93.5 percent (last year this stood at 90 percent). Audi leads at 96 percent, followed by VW (95 percent) and Chevrolet (94.8percent).
The category of PC Servicing Experience was topped by Chevrolet (88 percent), Lexus (87.9 percent), VW (87.6 percent), Opel (87.5percent), Audi (87.2 percent), Mitsubishi (86.5 percent) and Mercedes-Benz (85.9 percent), again with very close scores.
The category of LCV Purchasing Experience showed a high category average of 91.7 percent, up from 88.0 percent last year. Top performers included Isuzu (92.9 percent), Toyota (92.8 percent), Chevrolet (92 percent), Ford (91.8 percent) and Mazda (91.4 percent).
The top achievers for the category of LCV Servicing Experience were Chevrolet (88 percent), Isuzu (87.5 percent) and Toyota (87.2 percent). The average score for this category improved from last year - from 80 percent to 85 percent
The 2012 Ipsos Quality Awards are based on interviews with customers who purchased or serviced a vehicle between January and December 2011. This study makes up part of the largest survey of South African vehicle owners.
"To conclude, we must compliment the manufacturers on an excellent performance this year and improvement across all of the categories," said Rice. "This is especially impressive given that the pressure for sales during the recession has relaxed somewhat and the drive for happy customers is still such a priority. With such high and close scores, there is an opportunity for all the OEMs to push the envelope and set a new standard within the market — the key to which lies in understanding customers to an even greater extent."
Not all the brands are included in the survey for various reasons. This could be because the manufacturer chooses not to participate or because the sample that has been achieved is too small. Another reason some manufacturers do not get published is due to the length of participation in the study — a full year of participation is required before a brand can be included in the rankings.
The full results:
PC Purchasing Experience
PC Servicing Experience
LCV Purchasing Experience
LCV Servicing Experience
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