AutoPacific: Call it ‘entry-level luxury’, ‘compact executive’, or ‘aspirational luxury,’ but owners are simply calling it a winner. They rate Lexus’ brand reputation and Lexus dealerships as significant contributors toward the brand’s 2008 Motorist Choice Award® win. With segment-leading overall satisfaction, the Lexus IS scored extremely well with owners in durability, reliability and overall quality. Owners also gave the IS high marks for quality materials, instrumentation, controls and comfy seats.
IntelliChoice: The Lexus IS has the Best in Class ownership costs, best retained value and strong fuel and repair costs.
Each year AutoPacific identifies the Brand and individual vehicles that top all others in vehicle satisfaction: The Vehicle Satisfaction Awards. AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award (VSA) is an industry benchmark for objectively measuring how satisfied an owner is with their new passenger car or light truck. Owner satisfaction is measured across 46 specific areas related to a vehicle’s operation, comfort, safety and the overall purchase/lease experience. The 2008 ratings reflect input from 33,500 buyers and lessees of new vehicles acquired September through December 2007.
2008 Vehicle Satisfaction Award top brand honors went to Cadillac, while other luxury brands such as Lexus, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche also had strong showings. But what does it mean to have a top brand? Though calculations single out one brand as having the highest overall score, each individual attribute also has its own top scorer. Sometimes the detail underneath it all can have just as much, if not more, meaning than the final outcome.
ES350 scored its top ranking in the Luxury Mid-Size Car Segment with high owner ratings in areas expected to be Lexus’ strengths, including excellent Ride and Comfortable Seats. The Reputation of the Lexus brand and the Reputation of the ES for Quality, Comfort and Reliability contributed to its position atop its product category.
Cadillac Top Brand, Mercedes-Benz S-Class Top Car, Toyota Sequoia Top Truck and Top Vehicle
Tustin, California, May 29, 2008 – A study released today by noted automotive consulting firm AutoPacific, Inc
. summarizes the results of its 2008 model year vehicle satisfaction research. AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award (VSA) is an industry benchmark for objectively measuring how satisfied an owner is with their new passenger car or light truck.
In a year that promises to be the toughest in a decade, owner-based awards like AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award will help customers make their purchase decisions.
The brand with the highest satisfaction rating is Cadillac. The vehicle – car or truck – registering highest overall satisfaction in 2008 is the new-for-2008 Toyota Sequoia Large Sport Utility Vehicle. The passenger car with the highest overall satisfaction score is the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
There are twenty-eight Vehicle Satisfaction Award categories. At the manufacturer level, multiple top ranked award winners include: General Motors
(eleven categories), Toyota (nine categories), Ford (six categories), Volkswagen
(four categories), Honda
(three categories) and Hyundai
“Cadillac wins the Vehicle Satisfaction Award as the top brand in a close race. Strong satisfaction performance by Cadillac cars and trucks has Cadillac winning over other leading luxury marques including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW says AutoPacific president George Peterson. “Top ranked finishes by Cadillac’s Escalade, CTS and DTS helped cement their industry topping position.”
Peterson continues, “Vehicles that are all new received top rankings in several categories: Cadillac CTS, Honda Accord, Mitsubishi Lancer, Scion xD, Toyota Sequoia, Audi Q7, Buick Enclave, Hyundai Veracruz, GMC Acadia, Saturn Vue and Nissan Rogue. These new-for-2008 vehicles were strongly rated by their owners showing that the industry continues to improve as new vehicles are added to the hotly contested American car and light truck markets.”
From a vehicle type perspective, Traditional Sport Utility Vehicles received the highest ratings as a class closely followed by Crossover Sport Utility Vehicles. Peterson says, “Clearly, SUVs continue to be one of the most popular and satisfying vehicle types available in the USA today. Even with skyrocketing gas prices, SUVs are attractive and Crossover SUVs fill the bill for most SUV buyers with better fuel economy.” Cars scored slightly below industry average followed by minivans and pickup trucks.
According to AutoPacific’s annual survey of new car and light truck acquirers, the BMW 3-Series, Acura MDX, Lexus RX, Honda Accord, and Infiniti QX56 attract the most tech savvy buyers. Tech savvy consumers made up approximately 5% of the new car buying population in 2007, up from just 2% in 2006. As Gen Y matures and enters the new vehicle market in greater numbers, AutoPacific expects these numbers to continue their growth. Tech savvy car buyers were defined utilizing a collection of data filters from AutoPacific’s Research Suite® database.
The reigning king of the Luxury SUV hill is probably the Range Rover. High priced at $77,175. Features most couldn’t conceive of in an off-road environment. Extremely competent off road. The top of the Land Rover line has established a tremendous reputation and following as THE aspirational Luxury SUV. Range Rover is not the best selling Luxury SUV, but it casts a wide shadow. And has since the early 1970s. VehicleVoice was on hand at The Grand Del Mar Hotel for the media preview of the Lexus LX570. Priced at $73,800, LX570 undercuts the Rangie, but is no less competent.
LX570 – 3rd Generation Lexus LX
Lexus entered the upper end of the Luxury SUV market in 1996 with a facelifted and upgraded Toyota Land Cruiser – the Lexus LX450. The 1st Gen LX was replaced in 1999 by the LX470 which was freshened in 2002 and 2005. So, after a ten year run, it is time for Lexus to bring its latest LX to the market – the LX570.
The first two LX generations did not set the world on fire from a sales standpoint. They were functional-looking SUVs loaded with features. Not head-turners. Not something to make your blood rush. They did, however, bring a very interesting clientele to Lexus. Younger, highly affluent, not wanting to make a strong statement with their vehicle. Confident, not having to show off their wealth. The 3rd Gen LX follows the same formula and hopes to attract the same type of buyer for slightly under 10,000 units per year or 3.5 LX570s per month for each of Lexus’ 223 dealers.
AutoPacific Take on Lexus SC Win – For the second consecutive year the Lexus SC wins the Premium Sports Car class, bringing home yet another Motorist Choice Award®. Owners still rate the interior and exterior styling as strongly satisfying. Its comfortable exterior size, easy ingress/egress and driver’s seat comfort make it easy for owners to put the SC430 on top. Owners rate the brand’s reputation, vehicle’s reputation and overall quality as best in class. With a smooth retractable hardtop, great audio system, and superior overall quality, SC owners have chosen the Lexus SC as the benchmark.
IntelliChoice take on Lexus SC win - The Lexus SC performs well in this class by having best in class maintenance costs and repair costs along with low insurance costs.
AutoPacific Take on Lexus LS Win – Owners didn’t exactly surprise us when they earmarked the Lexus flagship as a winner in the Premium Luxury Car category. Leading the class in the 2007 Motorist Choice Awards® owner’s rate the vehicle’s reputation and the quality of the Lexus dealership experience as significant contributors to its win. In addition, the LS owners rated the interior materials as top-notch, with a quiet interior and innovative technology. Owners also reported feeling very safe while driving and applauded the overall quality of their vehicle.
IntelliChoice take on Lexus LS win – In a class where retained value is king, the Lexus LS beats out the competition. The LS also performs well in fuel, maintenance, and repairs.
AutoPacific Take on Lexus IS Win – In an extremely competitive class where enthusiast buyers dominate, it’s tough to be king of the hill. The all-new 2007 Lexus IS sport sedan decisively wins the Motorist Choice Award® for Aspirational Luxury Cars. Owners rate the Lexus brand reputation and the overall quality as significant contributors to its win. Lexus IS owners also find its anti-theft features and reliable/dependable reputation very appealing.
IntelliChoice take on Lexus IS win - The Lexus IS is an IntelliChoice 2007 BOVY winner. The IS has a retained value and repair costs near the top of the segment.