Report: Car buyers see little difference among car brands

Car Shoppers See Fewer Difference Between Car Brands

A survey has been conducted by the Consumer Reports National Research Center that reflects the consumer’s perception of automotive brands, revealing that small car company’s credibility is on the rise in the eye of the public.

The 2012 Car-Brand Perception Survey compiles data based on seven different categories, including quality, value, safety, environmentally friendly/green, performance, technology/innovation, and design/style. Each category gets is own score, which is then totaled for each automaker’s overall brand-perception score. All of the scores are based on consumer option and not industry facts.

Maintaining its lead in consumer brand perception is Toyota, as well as other major brands, with Honda, Ford, BMW, and Chevrolet all at the top of the list. What has changed from previous years is how much these brands are leading over smaller automakers by. Toyota has seen a drop by 17 points from last year, while Honda, Ford and BMW all decreased by over 20 points. Cadillac and Chevrolet’s scores saw the smallest decrease of less then 10 points each.

Taking over the lost points, at least in part, are the electric car companies, which are becoming increasingly popular. Both Tesla and Fisker were added onto the survey this year, and received better scores then some of the more reputable brands.

What is remaining the same from previous years are the outstanding factors consumers are basing vehicle purchases on. In order of importance they are safety, quality, value, performance, environmental friendliness, design/style, and technology and innovation. It seems that the small automakers are beginning to meet consumer needs, and should continue on in this direction.

–  By: Alexandra Koken

Source: Consumer Reports