Michelin top in J.D. Power US satisfaction survey
The latest J.D. Power and Associates survey in the United States has revealed a growing level of tyre satisfaction amongst owners of domestic and European vehicles. According to the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 U.S. Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study, released on April 11, levels of tyre satisfaction amongst owners of US-produced vehicles increased to 682 on a 1,000-point scale, up from 659 in 2009. Similarly, tyre satisfaction among owners of European vehicles has increased to 698 in 2011 from 689 in 2009. Tyre satisfaction for owners of Asian vehicles, however, has remained flat, declining just one point between 2009 and 2011 to its current level of 637. Tyre satisfaction amongst owners of Asian nameplate vehicles, J.D. Power notes, is well below average in all segments except for the luxury segment.
“Tyres are fairly unique among automotive components, in that the brand name of the supplier is more closely associated with the component than the vehicle nameplate,” reflected Casey Mier, research manager in the automotive practice at J.D. Power and Associates. “However, automotive manufacturers clearly have the final say in the specification and type of tyres that go on their vehicles. Therefore, it is particularly important for automakers and tyre manufacturers to develop close relationships to ensure the satisfaction of the end-consumer.”
Four market segments – luxury, passenger car, performance sport and truck utility – were included in the study of responses of more than 26,000 motorists who had purchased a 2009 or 2010 model-year vehicle, and owner satisfaction was measured by examining four factors: tyre wearability; tyre appearance; tyre traction/handling; and tyre ride. Michelin ranked highest in tyre owner satisfaction in all four segments. In the luxury, passenger car and truck/utility segments the brand also performed particularly well in tyre wearability. In the performance sport segment, Michelin performed well in tyre ride.
Another finding was that owner-reported tyre problems have declined, down from 88 per 100 vehicles in 2009 to 84 last year. Nearly one-third of owners who indicated they had not experienced any problems with their tyres said they would recommend their tyre brand, while only 21 per cent of owners who experienced just one problem said the same. Of those with a satisfaction of score of 800 or higher, 49 per cent said they “definitely will” recommend their tyre brand to family and friends. In comparison, just 29 per cent of customers with a satisfaction score below 500 said they “definitely will not” recommend their tyre brand.