According to the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2013 India Initial Quality StudySM (IQS) released today, car buyers in India are choosing to purchase vehicles with better initial quality. According to the study, the sales of automakers that have above-industry-average quality have increased by an average of 6 percent since 2011. In contrast, automakers whose customers report more quality problems than average have experienced an 8 percent decline in sales during the same period.
This trend gets even more pronounced with experienced/repeat buyers, with 27 percent choosing higher quality vehicles during the same period.
The study, now in its 17th year, measures problems owners experience with their new vehicle during the first two to six months of ownership. The study examines more than 200 problem symptoms covering eight vehicle categories (listed in order of frequency of reported problems): engine and transmission; vehicle exterior; driving experience; HVAC; features, controls and displays; vehicle interior; seats; and audio, entertainment and navigation.
All problems are then summarized as the number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100). Lower PP100 scores indicate a lower rate of problem incidence and therefore higher initial quality. Overall initial quality in India averages 115 PP100 in 2013, an improvement from 120 PP100 in 2012. HVAC is the only category with a year-over-year increase in the number or reported problems.
Honda and Toyota each have three models that rank highest in their respective segments. Honda models receiving awards are the Brio (upper compact segment); Amaze (entry midsize); and Honda City (midsize). Toyota receives awards for the Innova (MUV/ MPV); Corolla Altis (premium midsize); and Fortuner (SUV).
Hyundai Santro ranks highest for the second consecutive year in the compact car segment. Maruti Suzuki’s Alto 800 (entry compact) and Swift (premium compact) rank highest for the second consecutive year in their respective segments.
“With quality being one of the key drivers for purchasing vehicles, automakers need to focus on achieving exceptional quality levels,” said Mohit Arora, executive director at J.D. Power Asia Pacific, Singapore.