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Toyota Retains Large Incentive Advantage

Only Honda spends less attracting shoppers; others far more.

by on Apr.02, 2010

Pedals, smeddles, Toyota moves metal as well as any automaker and at far less cost.

For every $500 that Toyota offers in incentives, other automakers have to counter with incentives ranging from $420 to more than $3,000 to generate the same consideration levels among new car shoppers, according to a report from CNW Research.

The data are for equivalent cars among brands.

The study was conducted during the first quarter of 2010 when Toyota unintended acceleration woes dominated national news coverage, shows that with the exception of Honda, major automakers still lack the innate advantage that Toyota’s reputation has among new car buyers.

During March, Toyota, helped be record level incentives, saw sales rebound to pre-recall levels. About 40% of Toyota buyers came from other makers last month.

Among the big six makers in U.S. sales, Honda retained its consideration advantage, since it only has to spend $425 to Toyota’s $500, continuing a Honda edge, varying from $325 to $475,  that has existed for a decade, according to CNW.

Chrysler was at the other end of the scale, needing $3,100, an all time high for the decade.

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Incentive Equivalent Big Six

2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Toyota 500 500 500 500 500 500 500 500 500 500 500
GM 1,950 2,100 2,075 2,150 1,975 1,850 1,125 1,175 1,500 2,000 1,750
Ford 1,550 1,475 1,550 1,575 1,525 1,375 1,525 1,575 1,500 1,250 950
Chrysler 1,750 1,975 1,650 1,525 1,075 1,525 1,775 2,050 2,275 2,675 3,100
Nissan 1,275 1,350 1,150 1,025 875 900 1,025 1,050 1,050 1,075 800
Honda 350 325 325 375 350 425 475 450 425 450 425
Source: CNW Research. Calendar Years, in U.S. dollars. The ratio is Toyota $500 : Other Brand. 2010 data are Q1

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Toyota Tops in Customer Loyalty for 2009

Japanese maker beats ailing GM for first time in nine years.

by on Jan.13, 2010

King of the loyalty castle in spite of what the peasants in the media assert.

Japanese makers Toyota and Honda took top honors in the R. L. Polk & Co.’s 14th Annual Automotive Loyalty Awards.

Toyota ranked number one in Overall Loyalty to a Manufacturer at almost 60%, which indicates a manufacturer’s ability to retain previous customers. Honda was at 55%.

Toyota beat General Motors for the first time in nine years, likely as a result of its well-publicized bankruptcy, subsequent cancellation of four brands, Pontiac, Saturn, Saab and Hummer, and ongoing losses. All of course are devastating to the confidence of potential purchasers.

An earlier Polk study indicates the magnitude of a loyalty problem GM faces after canceling brands. Based on data from January through August 2009, three-quarters of the defectors (75%)  from GM brands purchased an import car or truck, while 25% bought a Ford or Chrysler product.

Top non-GM models purchased by former Saturn owners during this period are the Toyota Corolla, Honda Accord, Honda CR-V and the Toyota Camry. The top-selling domestic vehicle to defected Saturn owners are the Ford Fusion, the Ford Escape and the Ford Focus though  in smaller volumes.

In the  latest study, Toyota won top honors in the Mid/Full-Size Car and Mid/Full-Size SUV categories for the Toyota Prius and Lexus RX respectively, and received the new award for brand loyalty among Asian American consumers.

Loyalty, as Polk defines it, is determined when a household that owns a new vehicle returns to the auto market and purchases or leases another new vehicle of the same model or make.

The numbers, arguably, refute a growing chorus of media claims that Toyota is suffering from an image problem due to well-publicized recalls for unintended acceleration and rusting, as well as customer complaints about the braking performance of the Prius hybrid model, amongother issues.

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