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Ford Motor and Hyundai Top Latest Ratings

Experian claims loyalty strong at Ford, share up at Hyundai.

by on Feb.18, 2010

Toyota's new Venza model was Number One in brand loyalty.

Ford Motor Company vehicles accounted for four of the top five vehicles for customer brand loyalty, according to a recent industry analysis from Experian Automotive.

The analysis of what’s said to be  industry-wide automotive trends for the third quarter of 2009, also saw Hyundai performing strongly, with gains in overall market share and increased new vehicle registrations.

From the second to third quarter of 2009, Ford customers continued to show strong loyalty for the Ford brand. Ford’s Fusion, Edge, Flex and Five-Hundred models were all within the top five vehicles for customer brand loyalty at 61.8%, 57.8%, 57.6% and 56.3%, respectively. Ford Freestyle had the 10th highest brand loyalty at 47.6%.

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While Ford had a strong presence in brand loyalty, Toyota’s new Venza model was Number One in brand loyalty at 63.2%. Toyota’s Prius (51.8%) and Camry (48%) came in at numbers seven and nine, respectively. When it came to corporate loyalty, Toyota moved ahead of GM to take the top spot. Ford followed closely in third place.

The third quarter when the survey was taken was just the beginning of Toyota’s well-publicized safety recall and quality woes. Other more recent surveys show the Toyota brand holding up surprisingly well.

Hyundai performed strongly in the third quarter by gaining 2.2 percentage points in overall market share and experiencing a 30.1% increase in new vehicle registrations. Ford also saw improvements in market share, growing by 1.1 percentage points, and in new vehicle registrations, growing by 5.1% for the quarter.

“Given the extraordinary challenges in the current economy, Ford and Hyundai showed positive growth,” said Jeff Anderson, director of Consulting and Analytics for Experian Automotive. “Both were able to pick up market share gains and improve on their customer loyalty. This gain in momentum should see these companies well-positioned for success when the market turns around.”

Other insights from Experian Automotive’s analysis included:

  • Hyundai’s corporate loyalty rose to fifth overall to tie nearly with Honda at almost 40% loyalty.
  • The Cash for Clunkers program (July 1, 2009, to Aug. 24, 2009) accounted for a quarter of Q3 2009 new vehicle registrations. Toyota led brand loyalty among participants, with 41% of those who disposed of a Toyota purchasing another Toyota vehicle.
  • Cross-Over Vehicles and Small Car-Economy were the two fastest-growing vehicle segments, gaining 50,747 and 49,698 more registrations, respectively, year over year. Full Size pickup trucks saw the largest decline with 114,613 fewer registrations than in the same quarter for 2008.

“For several quarters now, the industry has worked diligently to better understand the ever-evolving landscape of consumer tastes in vehicles,” said Scott Waldron, president of Experian Automotive. “The recent shifts in consumer loyalty, corporate market share and vehicle class preferences show that building future success will come from increased knowledge of the changes in consumer buying habits today.”

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