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Dealers Helped Take Sting Out of Recalls, Finds JD Power Survey

Jaguar, Buick tops in customer service, in new survey.

by on Mar.18, 2015

John Csernotta of J.D. Power, left, presented Joe Eberhardt, center, and Eric Johnston, right, of Jaguar with a 2015 J.D. Power Customer Service Index award

While a record number of vehicles – about 64 million in all – were recalled in the U.S. last year, dealers helped take the sting out of things, according to a new survey by J.D. Power and Associates.

Power’s latest Customer Service Index found that dealers went out of their way to make the repair process as painless as possible.

A Real Performer!

“Manufacturers have shown that it is possible to turn a potential negative into a positive when it comes to recalls if they’re done in a way that doesn’t inconvenience the customer,” noted Chris Sutton, vice president of J.D. Power’s U.S. automotive retail practice. (more…)

Cadillac, Buick Top New Power Customer Service Study

Motorists increasingly pleased with dealers as more makers add free service.

by on Apr.09, 2014

Cadillac topped the new Power study with products like the new-for-2014 ATS sedan.

It’s conventional wisdom consumers hate to visit a car dealer, especially for service or repairs – but a new study suggests that’s far from true these days, in large part due to complimentary and prepaid maintenance programs. And digital tablets are playing a role in improving customer satisfaction, it turns out.

Two General Motors brands have topped the list in this year’s J.D. Power and Associates’ latest Customer Service Index, or CSI, toppling such traditional leaders as Lexus and Toyota.  The study looks at how pleased owners of 1 to 5-year-old vehicles are with the service they’ve received at franchised dealerships.

Stay Satisfied!

The availability of maintenance programs – whether free or prepaid – played a key factor in how makers fared in the 2014 Power CSI.  More than two-thirds of luxury car owners who responded to the survey, and nearly half of those driving a mass-market model, said they were covered by some sort of program that minimizes the cost of service and repairs.

(more…)

Lexus, Mini, top J.D. Power Customer Service Index

Customers face little "upsell" pressure from dealer service shops.

by on Mar.11, 2011

The repair shop can make a big difference in the way a customer views a dealership - and a brand.

Lexus and Mini are the brands most likely to satisfy customers – at least those owners who take their vehicles in for service, reports J.D. Power and Associates.

While its conventional wisdom that consumers will be heavily pressed to make unnecessary repairs by greedy dealers, the 2011 Customer Service Index reveals that very few owners actually face “upsell” pressure from dealers who want to perform unnecessary repairs.

Only 7% of customers faced such pressures, according to Power’s survey of nearly 100,000 owners and lessees of 2006 through 2010 model-year vehicles.  But the report reveals that the older the vehicle the more likely an owner is to face upselling.  And, in some cases, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, reports Power.

News You Can Use!

Suggesting additional service work can actually benefit both customers and dealerships,” according to Jon Osborn, Power’s research director, because “customers may prolong the life of their vehicle while service facilities may gain additional revenue.”

Nonetheless, he stressed that dealers need to properly train their staff to suggest additional work only when it is truly necessary – and not to make customers feel unduly pressured.

(more…)