India’s top car brands ranked by best sales experience in 2013

The JD Power Asia Pacific 2013 India Sales Satisfaction Index has some interesting findings besides letting you know what the best car brands are based on the overall sales experience – from the time you make an enquiry about the car to the actual delivery process.

In addition to the best sales experience the survey also found two more interesting aspects this year – that car buyers are increasingly using the Internet to compare cars, look for deals, finance options and look up car specifications and they have also in the process of considering a new car, also increasingly looked at used car deals available on the Internet. Also read:Best cars in India with least quality problems 2012

Best car brands based on Sales Satisfaction Index

The top five car companies in India based on overall sales satisfaction are Honda and Maruti with a score of 849 each out of 1000. In second place, Hyundai, Toyota and Mahindra follow with all three brands scoring 841 out of 1000. In fact, this is the industry average. All other brands such as Volkswagen, Tata, Nissan, Renault, Chevrolet, Skoda, Ford and Fiat score below average, with Fiat being the poorest in terms of sales experience. Mitsubishi wasn’t considered because of insufficient sample size says JD Power.

The study examines seven factors that contribute to new-vehicle buyers’ overall satisfaction with the sales experience (listed in order of importance): delivery process, delivery timing, salesperson, sales initiation, dealer facility, paperwork and deal.

Overall sales satisfaction in the mass market segment is 841 index points on a 1,000-point scale, a 21-point increase from 2012. On average, automakers post strong increases across all the factors, most notably in salesperson, paperwork and delivery timing.

According to the survey, the overall improvement in satisfaction is driven by a higher quality of engagement between salespersons and customers. The majority (96%) of customers indicate that their salesperson spent sufficient time in conversation focused only on them. Additionally, 61% of customers indicate that their salesperson demonstrated the vehicle’s features and benefits during the test drive, up from 54% in 2012. Further, overall delivery time for new vehicles has declined significantly to an average of 10 days in 2013 from 12 days in 2012, probably owing to higher production, but lower demand.

Car buyers increasingly considering used cars

The survey also found that 13% of new vehicle buyers had considered a used vehicle during their shopping process. This is a 10% increase over the past three years. This could stem from a number of factors – the increasing availability of used cars because of higher prices for new cars and newer models coming out in the market, the slowdown in the economy leading to lower affordability and also new finance schemes and warranties being offered on used cars through car companies itself.

Car buyers increasingly using the Internet to compare cars

Also among those new-vehicle buyers who also considered a used car during their shopping process, 37% said they used the Internet during the shopping process. While among those who considered only a new car, only 27% used the Internet during the shopping process.

The 2013 JD Power India Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study is based on responses from 8,434 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between September 2012 and April 2013, and includes evaluations of more than 71 models within the mass market category. The survey for the study was done between March and July 2013. Also read: India’s most dependable cars’s in 2013