Audi may be No.1 in sales, but BMW beats it in satisfaction: JD Power Survey

BMW isn’t the largest-selling luxury car maker in India right now, having sacrificed that position to Audi a while ago. But it’s still the brand that ranks highest when it comes to sales satisfaction, with Mercedes at No.2 and Audi at No.3 according to the JD Power 2013 India Sales Satisfaction Index.

Last month, JD Power brought out a survey on sales satisfaction for mass market brands and surprisingly, luxury brands such as BMW, Audi and Mercedes are not much different when it comes to overall sales satisfaction among customers. Also see: India’s top car brands ranked by best sales experience in 2013 

The 2013 India Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study for the luxury brands is based on responses from 253 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between September 2012 and April 2013. The study was fielded from March to July 2013. The study covers seven main areas of sales satisfaction: delivery process; delivery timing; salesperson; sales initiation dealer facility; paperwork; and deal.

The luxury vehicle market in India is expected to touch 26,000 units in 2013 and increase to 84,000 units by 2020.

Overall sales satisfaction in the luxury segment averages 873 points on a 1,000-point scale, 32 points higher than the mass market average. However, satisfaction among luxury vehicle buyers whose overall sales experience only met their expectations is not significantly different than those among mass-market buyers (842 vs. 834, respectively).

BMW ranks highest among luxury brands in sales satisfaction in India with a score of 881. BMW performs particularly well in the dealer facility, sales initiation and salesperson factors.

The study also finds key differences in new-vehicle shopping behaviour between the luxury and mass market segments. Key drivers of luxury-vehicle purchases are overall vehicle performance and safety, while drivers of mass market-vehicle purchases are brand reputation and reliability.

Luxury-vehicle buyers are more likely to use the Internet during their shopping process, with 34 percent going online to search for vehicle features and specifications, compared with 28 percent of mass market-vehicle buyers. Also read:Best cars in India with least quality problems 2012

Over 68% of luxury buyers have two or more vehicles in their household. Additionally, 93 percent of luxury-vehicle buyers opt to finance their purchase, compared with 72 percent of mass market-vehicle buyers.