AutoPacific named its 14th Annual Vehicle Satisfaction Awards (VSA), with Ford, Toyota, General Motors, Honda and Nissan each receiving multiple nods. Based on the research firm's national survey, Cadillac is the top premium brand, Buick is the top popular brand, Suzuki Kizashi is the top car and Lincoln MKT is the top truck.
"While the auto industry is showing signs of improvement, more than ever before, manufacturers need to be able to differentiate themselves. Proof of satisfied customers is as good as gold," said George Peterson, president of AutoPacific. "We've found that more than 25 percent of new-car buyers are positively influenced by owner-based awards like the VSA when deciding on a new car or truck."
AutoPacific's VSA is an industry benchmark for measuring how satisfied an owner is with his/her new car or light truck. This study by the Southern California-based automotive research firm summarizes the results of over 42,000 new vehicle owners.
"Vehicles that score highest in the Vehicle Satisfaction Awards are delivering value and satisfaction across a wide range of attributes," said Peterson. "The winners perform well in 48 separate categories that objectively measure the ownership experience."
The vehicle - car or truck - registering highest overall satisfaction in 2010 is the all new Suzuki Kizashi. The Kizashi scored 99 points above the industry average to place first among all 2010-model year vehicles in AutoPacific's survey. "This is an amazing win for Suzuki," said Peterson, "The Kizashi is Suzuki's most important vehicle, and this performance in our research is exceptional."
The truck or SUV with the highest overall satisfaction score is the Lincoln MKT, scoring 94 points above industry average.
At the manufacturer level, multiple top-ranked award winners are: Ford with seven wins, Toyota with four wins, General Motors, Honda, and Nissan with three wins each.
"As we cautiously emerge from this economic crisis, new vehicle buyers are being especially careful, and the data we've analyzed for the Vehicle Satisfaction Award will help this year's customers make wise purchase decisions," said Peterson.
Top 2010 model year performers are:
Highest Satisfaction Premium Brand:
Highest Satisfaction Popular Brand:
Premium Luxury Car
Aspirational Luxury Car
Luxury Mid-Size Car
Premium Mid-Size Car
Premium Compact Car
Mercury Milan Hybrid
Heavy Duty Pickup
Large Light Duty Pickup
Luxury Sport Utility
Large Sport Utility
Premium Mid-Size Sport Utility
Mid-Size Sport Utility
Premium Luxury Crossover
Luxury Crossover SUV
Large Crossover SUV
Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV
Mid-Size Crossover SUV
Compact Crossover SUV
Dodge Ram HD
Nissan Pathfinder/Toyota 4Runner
Lexus RX400h Hybrid