Consumers are not as concerned with getting a great deal on a new car, truck, or SUV as the auto industry may believe based on results of the annual J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality study. In the study, new-vehicle owners are asked to cite the reasons they chose the particular make and model of vehicle they purchased and are able to provide multiple reasons for their selection.
Listed below are the 10 reasons most frequently cited in the 2010–2012 Initial Quality Studies, none of which pertain to such economic considerations as low price, low payment, financing, high resale value, or longer warranty coverage.
For 3 consecutive years, reliability and durability are the most common reasons for selecting a particular make and model.
2) Interior Comfort
Finding a vehicle comfortable is the second-most-frequently cited reason for selecting a new vehicle for a third consecutive year.
3) Exterior Styling
In recent years, exterior styling has increased in importance among new-vehicle buyers, rising from the fourth-most-frequently cited reason for purchasing to the third-most-frequently cited reason.
4) Gas Mileage
In recent years, fuel economy has taken on a new level of importance among new-vehicle buyers, rising from the sixth-most-often-cited reason for purchasing in 2010 and 2011 to the fourth-most-often-cited reason in 2012. Gas mileage now ties with a vehicle's quality of workmanship in terms of importance in the vehicle selection process.
5) Quality of Workmanship
Vehicle buyers are less concerned about a vehicle's quality of workmanship today than they were in 2010. This factor has declined in importance during the past 3 years, dropping from the second-most-frequently cited reason given for choosing a particular make and model in 2010 to the fourth-most-frequently cited reason in 2012, in a tie with gas mileage.
6) Dealer was Convenient/Liked Dealer in Area
Though this factor declined in importance in the 2012 Initial Quality Study, dropping to the sixth-most-frequently cited reason for purchase from the fifth-most-frequently cited reason, new-vehicle buyers generally prefer to shop local, choosing to do business with a convenient dealer that they like rather than to buy from a dealer offering the best deal.
During the past 3 years, vehicle performance has consistently proven to be the seventh-most-often-cited reason that vehicle buyers choose a specific make and model.
8) Advanced Technology
Whether or not a new vehicle offers advanced technology is increasing in importance as a decision-making factor among new-vehicle buyers. During the past 3 years, this reason has risen from the 10th-most-frequently cited reason for purchase to the eighth-most-frequently cited reason, now tying with the image that the new vehicle portrays.
9) Like the Image Vehicle Portrays
For the past 3 years, vehicle buyers have said they bought a specific make and model for the image it portrays frequently enough to consistently make this reason the eighth-most-common reason given for vehicle selection. This year, vehicle image is tied with the availability of advanced technology.
Safety declined in importance in the 2011 IQS, dropping to the 10th-most-frequently cited reason for purchasing a specific make and model of new vehicle from its previous position as the ninth-most-frequently cited reason.
To learn more about likely Automotive Buyers, check out the Audience Interests & Intent report available on the Research Store at ad-ology.com.[Source: "J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study." J.D. Power and Associates. 13 Mar. 2013. Web. 19 Mar. 2013.]