BMW Ranks Highest in Vehicle Dependability in Inaugural Mexico Study; SEAT Receives Two Segment Awards, Nissan and Toyota One
Technology Not a Problem for Vehicle Owners
MEXICO CITY: 28 October 2015 — BMW ranks highest in vehicle dependability among all nameplates in Mexico, according to the inaugural J.D. Power 2015 Mexico Vehicle Dependability StudySM (VDS) released today.
The study measures problems experienced during the past 12 months by original owners of vehicles in Mexico after approximately 12-36 months of ownership. The study examines 177 problem symptoms across eight categories: engine and transmission; vehicle exterior; driving experience; features/controls/displays; audio/communication/entertainment/navigation (ACEN); seats; heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC); and vehicle interior. Overall dependability is determined by the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles (PP100), with a lower score reflecting higher quality.
BMW ranks highest with a score of 20 PP100. Mercedes-Benz ranks second with 21 PP100, followed by Acura with 22 PP100; GMC with 31 PP100; and MINI with 40 PP100. The overall industry average is 164 PP100.
The most commonly reported problems are noisy brakes (4.4 PP100), windows fog up/don’t clear quickly (4.3 PP100) and interior materials scuffing or soiling easily (4.0 PP100). In comparison, the top two problems reported by owners in the United States are Bluetooth pairing/connectivity and built-in voice recognition systems misinterpreting commands.
Air conditioning doesn’t reach or maintain the desired temperature (3.7 PP100) is among the top five most frequently reported problems in Mexico and also among the problems owners report as most severe. Technology, specifically in the ACEN category such as Bluetooth connectivity, is not among the 10 most common or most severe problems.
“Unlike other countries where technology-related problems are common, surprisingly in Mexico technology doesn’t make the most common problems,” said Gerardo Gomez, director and country manager at J.D. Power de México. “Technology is prevalent in vehicles here, but it’s likely that owners are satisfied just to have the technology in their vehicle, so they don’t say anything even if they have a problem with it.”
SEAT has two models (Toledo and Leon) that receive segment awards. Nissan (March) and Toyota (RAV4) each receive one award.
- The most frequently reported problems are in the interior category (35 PP100), followed by driving experience (26 PP100) and exterior (25 PP100).
- The overall average score among premium nameplates is 31 PP100, which is 138 PP100 lower than the non-premium average of 169 PP100. The problem category with the largest gaps in dependability scores between the premium and non-premium segments is interior (3.7 PP100 vs. 35.8 PP100, respectively).
- In addition to reporting problems experienced with their 1- to 3-year-old vehicles, owners also rate the severity of each problem they experience. The scale for problem severity ranges from 1 (very minor problem) to 5 (very serious problem). Six of the top ten most severe problems are in the engine/transmission category. Among owners who experience most of these problems, only 50-74 percent, depending on the problem, take their vehicle to their dealer to service the problem.
- Only 51 percent of owners who report problems with the engine overheating take their vehicle to the dealer for service. Among owners who report this problem, only 42 percent say they “definitely will” purchase the same brand of vehicle again, compared with 61 percent of those who do not report such a problem.
- The 2015 Mexico VDS also measures owner satisfaction with their vehicle. Owners are asked to rate the various aspects of their vehicle, including its interior, exterior, ACEN, driving dynamics and visibility and safety, which comprise an overall vehicle satisfaction index based on a 1,000-point scale. Overall satisfaction among premium brand owners averages 903, while overall satisfaction among volume vehicle owners is 830. Among brands that perform particularly well in owner satisfaction are (in alphabetical order): BMW, Honda, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz and Toyota.
- Among owners of premium vehicles, satisfaction is highest with the exterior (911) and visibility and safety (909) aspects of their vehicle and lowest with fuel economy (891) and storage and space (895). Among owners of non-premium vehicles, satisfaction is highest with driving dynamics (850) and exterior (848) and lowest with their vehicle’s ACEN system (804) and fuel economy (814).
The 2015 Mexico Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) is based on the evaluations of more than 7,000 interviews with owners in Mexico who purchased their vehicle from March 2012 through October 2014. The study was fielded from June through September 2015.
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 J.D. Power 2015 U.S. Vehicle Dependability StudySM