2008 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study: Porsche, Honda, Chevrolet among big winners

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http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/hot_lists/car_shopping/latest_news_reviews/porsche_honda_chevrolet_among_big_winners_in_2008_j_d_power_initial_quality_study_car_news
Porsche, Honda, Chevrolet Among Big Winners in 2008 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study - Car News
GM and Ford do well, but Chrysler winds up near the bottom.
BY JOSEPH SZCZESNY June 2008
For the third year in a row, Porsche came out on top in the J.D. Power and Associates closely watched annual Initial Quality Survey (IQS) of vehicles sold in the U.S. by three dozen top automotive brands. (The complete rankings can be found on the next page of this article. Click here.)
Porsche, which makes its home in Stuttgart, Germany, came out as the top automaker in the annual quality survey, while the Mercedes-Benz plant in Sindelfingen just outside of Stuttgart was named the top assembly plant. Porsche's Stuttgart plant, where the 911 cabriolet and coupe are built, came away with a "Silver" award as one of the best assembly plants in Europe, just ahead of BMW's Regensburg assembly plant.
Overall, Mercedes-Benz moved up one place against last year from fifth to fourth in the brand-level ranking, and three Mercedes-Benz models were among the top three of their respective segments.
However, vehicles from General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan also did well in the survey. For consumers, the survey is considered a good predictor of ownership experience throughout the life of a vehicle, even though it measures buyer satisfaction after a vehicle has been owned for just 90 days, officials from J.D. Power noted.
David Sargent, vice president of automotive research at J.D. Power's vehicle group, said the 2008 results reflected a steady "democratization of quality" across the industry. Japanese brands no longer dominate key vehicle categories, noted Sargent, echoing arguments domestic carmakers have been trying to make with only limited success. "All of the manufacturers are doing a really good job," Sargent said as he presented the 2008 survey results to the Automotive Press Association in Detroit.
Individual Vehicle Accolades and Overall Improvement
The survey also highlights the best vehicle in 17 different segments, ranging from subcompact passenger cars to full-size vans. No manufacturer was tops in more than three categories, Sargent said. However, Honda, which seems to be on a roll this spring, won in the critical subcompact and compact car categories with the Fit and Civic and in the compact activity vehicle with the CR-V. In addition, the Chevrolet Malibu came away with top honors in the highly competitive mid-size car category, much to the satisfaction of General Motors.
"Initial quality in the automotive industry has improved significantly in 2008, with substantial gains demonstrated by nearly three-fourths of the 36 ranked nameplates," Sargent noted. Overall quality improved to 118 problems per 100 vehicles in 2008, down from 125 registered in 2007, added Sargent, who noted more than 81,000 consumers participated in the poll. "Due to some strong new-vehicle launches, in addition to a continued reduction in the level of defects and malfunctions, overall quality improved by six percent in 2008, compared with 2007," Sargent said. "This gain is driven not only by strong advances from many of the high- volume brands such as Chevrolet, Ford, and Toyota, but also by very significant improvements by many other automakers.”
Sargent added that the industry-wide improvement was driven by automakers’ efforts to listen better to customer opinions and observations and to integrate the feedback into designing, engineering, and manufacturing better vehicles.
Flaws Now Blamed More on Initial Engineering, Less on Assembly
Where assembly plants used to get a bad rap in earlier surveys, many of the items buyers now find unappealing are design flaws that have to be fixed upstream in the vehicle development process rather than factory defects that are relatively easy to fix, Sargent said. "Considerable work is needed in design quality," around the industry, he said.
The introduction of new technology into a vehicle also is a challenge, he said. There are a lot of complaints about the integration of sound system and navigation screens. Manufacturers have to be aware of the challenges as they offer the new technology, he said.
Tom Wilkinson, GM spokesman, said the IQS results generally indicate GM's efforts to upgrade the company's models are working. "The Malibu was the fourth-best car in the entire survey," even though it was a brand new model, Wilkinson noted.
Meanwhile, Ford moved up to eighth place from tenth, while Mercury moved up two spots to sixth place, just ahead of the Honda brand, noted Ford officials. "For customers who make their purchase decision based on quality, Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles must be on their shopping lists," said Bennie Fowler, Ford group vice president, Global Quality. "It is gratifying to see our commitment to quality paying off in such recognition by J.D. Power and Associates," he said.
The one company that slipped, however, was Chrysler. Chrysler did have the top vehicle in two different segments—the Durango and Dakota topped their segments—but the Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep brands were in the bottom quarter overall among the 36 brands surveyed. The Jeep brand, in fact, was dead last. The bottom tier also included brands such as MINI, Land Rover, Saturn, Suzuki, and Saab. Chrysler spokesman Ed Saenz acknowledged Chrysler needed to raise the quality scores. "We're not satisfied," he said. "We know we need to do better."
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But the difference between the best to the worst is still only 0.8 problem per car. (Jeep's 167 - Porsche's 87) / 100

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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Plus, the system does not account for the severity of the problems. A car with a rare, but serious, problem (engine catching fire that destroys car) might make people less satisfied, on average, with the cars than a more common (but less serious) problem (car has defective blower motor switch, which does not require assistance of a fire department).
Jeff

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But doesn't that also mean, on average, every Jeep has almost two problems for Porsche's one? That's not so minor.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:
<snip>
Well poor initial quality is probably a good indicator of poor long-term-dependability, but not vice-versa.
Porsche's 2007 long-term-dependability was way below average (this is for models 3 years old).
Which vehicles are in the top ten for both IQ and LTD?
Lexus Honda Toyota Mercury
GM, Ford, and Chrysler should consider offering a 10 year bumper to bumper warranty for non-wear items, perhaps with a deductible in years 6-10. They need to convince people that their vehicles are reliable in the face of surveys like the ones from JD Power and Consumer Reports.
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Consider most Porsche owners are somewhat fanatical about ownership of these cars and hesitate to complain about mundane issues like the rest of us might.
http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/hot_lists/car_shopping/latest_news_reviews/porsche_honda_chevrolet_among_big_winners_in_2008_j_d_power_initial_quality_study_car_news
Porsche, Honda, Chevrolet Among Big Winners in 2008 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study - Car News
GM and Ford do well, but Chrysler winds up near the bottom.
BY JOSEPH SZCZESNY June 2008
For the third year in a row, Porsche came out on top in the J.D. Power and Associates closely watched annual Initial Quality Survey (IQS) of vehicles sold in the U.S. by three dozen top automotive brands. (The complete rankings can be found on the next page of this article. Click here.)
Porsche, which makes its home in Stuttgart, Germany, came out as the top automaker in the annual quality survey, while the Mercedes-Benz plant in Sindelfingen just outside of Stuttgart was named the top assembly plant. Porsche's Stuttgart plant, where the 911 cabriolet and coupe are built, came away with a "Silver" award as one of the best assembly plants in Europe, just ahead of BMW's Regensburg assembly plant.
Overall, Mercedes-Benz moved up one place against last year from fifth to fourth in the brand-level ranking, and three Mercedes-Benz models were among the top three of their respective segments.
However, vehicles from General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan also did well in the survey. For consumers, the survey is considered a good predictor of ownership experience throughout the life of a vehicle, even though it measures buyer satisfaction after a vehicle has been owned for just 90 days, officials from J.D. Power noted.
David Sargent, vice president of automotive research at J.D. Power's vehicle group, said the 2008 results reflected a steady "democratization of quality" across the industry. Japanese brands no longer dominate key vehicle categories, noted Sargent, echoing arguments domestic carmakers have been trying to make with only limited success. "All of the manufacturers are doing a really good job," Sargent said as he presented the 2008 survey results to the Automotive Press Association in Detroit.
Individual Vehicle Accolades and Overall Improvement
The survey also highlights the best vehicle in 17 different segments, ranging from subcompact passenger cars to full-size vans. No manufacturer was tops in more than three categories, Sargent said. However, Honda, which seems to be on a roll this spring, won in the critical subcompact and compact car categories with the Fit and Civic and in the compact activity vehicle with the CR-V. In addition, the Chevrolet Malibu came away with top honors in the highly competitive mid-size car category, much to the satisfaction of General Motors.
"Initial quality in the automotive industry has improved significantly in 2008, with substantial gains demonstrated by nearly three-fourths of the 36 ranked nameplates," Sargent noted. Overall quality improved to 118 problems per 100 vehicles in 2008, down from 125 registered in 2007, added Sargent, who noted more than 81,000 consumers participated in the poll. "Due to some strong new-vehicle launches, in addition to a continued reduction in the level of defects and malfunctions, overall quality improved by six percent in 2008, compared with 2007," Sargent said. "This gain is driven not only by strong advances from many of the high- volume brands such as Chevrolet, Ford, and Toyota, but also by very significant improvements by many other automakers.”
Sargent added that the industry-wide improvement was driven by automakers’ efforts to listen better to customer opinions and observations and to integrate the feedback into designing, engineering, and manufacturing better vehicles.
Flaws Now Blamed More on Initial Engineering, Less on Assembly
Where assembly plants used to get a bad rap in earlier surveys, many of the items buyers now find unappealing are design flaws that have to be fixed upstream in the vehicle development process rather than factory defects that are relatively easy to fix, Sargent said. "Considerable work is needed in design quality," around the industry, he said.
The introduction of new technology into a vehicle also is a challenge, he said. There are a lot of complaints about the integration of sound system and navigation screens. Manufacturers have to be aware of the challenges as they offer the new technology, he said.
Tom Wilkinson, GM spokesman, said the IQS results generally indicate GM's efforts to upgrade the company's models are working. "The Malibu was the fourth-best car in the entire survey," even though it was a brand new model, Wilkinson noted.
Meanwhile, Ford moved up to eighth place from tenth, while Mercury moved up two spots to sixth place, just ahead of the Honda brand, noted Ford officials. "For customers who make their purchase decision based on quality, Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles must be on their shopping lists," said Bennie Fowler, Ford group vice president, Global Quality. "It is gratifying to see our commitment to quality paying off in such recognition by J.D. Power and Associates," he said.
The one company that slipped, however, was Chrysler. Chrysler did have the top vehicle in two different segments—the Durango and Dakota topped their segments—but the Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep brands were in the bottom quarter overall among the 36 brands surveyed. The Jeep brand, in fact, was dead last. The bottom tier also included brands such as MINI, Land Rover, Saturn, Suzuki, and Saab. Chrysler spokesman Ed Saenz acknowledged Chrysler needed to raise the quality scores. "We're not satisfied," he said. "We know we need to do better."
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(ultrabig!) bucks for a Porsche, I'd bet he'd head to the dealership if there was a click in the windshield wiper, or a slightly crooked something or other that bugged him, whereas joe sixpack would ignore it. I used to be the roommate of a Porsche owner, and he wanted perfection at all times in any weather and was not about to put up with any imperfections.
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Great discussion, the mentality is just like Corvette owner's choice of this " world" renowned car makes them less likely to voice dissatisfaction with their purchase. The initial quality survey is sent to owners who check off boxes related to quality. If the survey was done off warranty records, the result may be different. My friend has a Z06, which has had a number of complex driveability issues, he still loves the car.

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Shep wrote:

I don't know about the JD Power surveys in this respect, but the Consumer Reports surveys show that Corvette owners love their cars but say they've been very unreliable.
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mack wrote:

Absolutely. If I paid that much $$$ for a new car I'd expect it to be damn perfect. You're not spending all that money to look cool (hopefully) you are spending it because you appreciate engineering excellence.
nate
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Is THAT why you are no longer his roommate?

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wrote:

That's true of most high end vehicle buyers. Why admit you made a mistake, when you can easily afford the maintenance.
Several years ago Mercedes owners had enough of their problems and many went public.
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Don't most people like the car they just bought within 90 days? Weak Statistic. Otherwise, it's kinda like admitting you're stupid. The meaningful information comes from those who have owned a car before and after the warranty is off. Not the non-manufacturer(exeption to the exception Kia/Hyundia 3/4 scale cars) exteneded warranty that covers only powertrain components except the ones you have go defective. As people tended to switch off from the domestics they were less likely to admit they bought a piece of crap. As people move to the latest fad cars they are less likely to admit their stupidity if if sucks. Again, 90 days means little when you consider human nature. Above average durability and customer service over the long run is what keeps customers happy.
http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/hot_lists/car_shopping/latest_news_reviews/porsche_honda_chevrolet_among_big_winners_in_2008_j_d_power_initial_quality_study_car_news
Porsche, Honda, Chevrolet Among Big Winners in 2008 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study - Car News
GM and Ford do well, but Chrysler winds up near the bottom.
BY JOSEPH SZCZESNY June 2008
For the third year in a row, Porsche came out on top in the J.D. Power and Associates closely watched annual Initial Quality Survey (IQS) of vehicles sold in the U.S. by three dozen top automotive brands. (The complete rankings can be found on the next page of this article. Click here.)
Porsche, which makes its home in Stuttgart, Germany, came out as the top automaker in the annual quality survey, while the Mercedes-Benz plant in Sindelfingen just outside of Stuttgart was named the top assembly plant. Porsche's Stuttgart plant, where the 911 cabriolet and coupe are built, came away with a "Silver" award as one of the best assembly plants in Europe, just ahead of BMW's Regensburg assembly plant.
Overall, Mercedes-Benz moved up one place against last year from fifth to fourth in the brand-level ranking, and three Mercedes-Benz models were among the top three of their respective segments.
However, vehicles from General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan also did well in the survey. For consumers, the survey is considered a good predictor of ownership experience throughout the life of a vehicle, even though it measures buyer satisfaction after a vehicle has been owned for just 90 days, officials from J.D. Power noted.
David Sargent, vice president of automotive research at J.D. Power's vehicle group, said the 2008 results reflected a steady "democratization of quality" across the industry. Japanese brands no longer dominate key vehicle categories, noted Sargent, echoing arguments domestic carmakers have been trying to make with only limited success. "All of the manufacturers are doing a really good job," Sargent said as he presented the 2008 survey results to the Automotive Press Association in Detroit.
Individual Vehicle Accolades and Overall Improvement
The survey also highlights the best vehicle in 17 different segments, ranging from subcompact passenger cars to full-size vans. No manufacturer was tops in more than three categories, Sargent said. However, Honda, which seems to be on a roll this spring, won in the critical subcompact and compact car categories with the Fit and Civic and in the compact activity vehicle with the CR-V. In addition, the Chevrolet Malibu came away with top honors in the highly competitive mid-size car category, much to the satisfaction of General Motors.
"Initial quality in the automotive industry has improved significantly in 2008, with substantial gains demonstrated by nearly three-fourths of the 36 ranked nameplates," Sargent noted. Overall quality improved to 118 problems per 100 vehicles in 2008, down from 125 registered in 2007, added Sargent, who noted more than 81,000 consumers participated in the poll. "Due to some strong new-vehicle launches, in addition to a continued reduction in the level of defects and malfunctions, overall quality improved by six percent in 2008, compared with 2007," Sargent said. "This gain is driven not only by strong advances from many of the high- volume brands such as Chevrolet, Ford, and Toyota, but also by very significant improvements by many other automakers.”
Sargent added that the industry-wide improvement was driven by automakers’ efforts to listen better to customer opinions and observations and to integrate the feedback into designing, engineering, and manufacturing better vehicles.
Flaws Now Blamed More on Initial Engineering, Less on Assembly
Where assembly plants used to get a bad rap in earlier surveys, many of the items buyers now find unappealing are design flaws that have to be fixed upstream in the vehicle development process rather than factory defects that are relatively easy to fix, Sargent said. "Considerable work is needed in design quality," around the industry, he said.
The introduction of new technology into a vehicle also is a challenge, he said. There are a lot of complaints about the integration of sound system and navigation screens. Manufacturers have to be aware of the challenges as they offer the new technology, he said.
Tom Wilkinson, GM spokesman, said the IQS results generally indicate GM's efforts to upgrade the company's models are working. "The Malibu was the fourth-best car in the entire survey," even though it was a brand new model, Wilkinson noted.
Meanwhile, Ford moved up to eighth place from tenth, while Mercury moved up two spots to sixth place, just ahead of the Honda brand, noted Ford officials. "For customers who make their purchase decision based on quality, Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles must be on their shopping lists," said Bennie Fowler, Ford group vice president, Global Quality. "It is gratifying to see our commitment to quality paying off in such recognition by J.D. Power and Associates," he said.
The one company that slipped, however, was Chrysler. Chrysler did have the top vehicle in two different segments—the Durango and Dakota topped their segments—but the Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep brands were in the bottom quarter overall among the 36 brands surveyed. The Jeep brand, in fact, was dead last. The bottom tier also included brands such as MINI, Land Rover, Saturn, Suzuki, and Saab. Chrysler spokesman Ed Saenz acknowledged Chrysler needed to raise the quality scores. "We're not satisfied," he said. "We know we need to do better."
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I agree.
And we keep seeing Buick at the top of the list, but we know it's the same shit that GM puts out under the Chevy nameplate, so it's not the car. In the case of Buick, it's the driver. 2500 miles/year at 25mph, never in the snow, and otherwise garaged--hell, what car WOULDN'T be top notch under those conditions?
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Good point! When one asks someone how they like their new vehicle, the response is usually not "I hate it!"
Kind of like asking that person what kind of a deal they negotiated on the car, people rarely say "I paid too much."
Also kind of like asking that person about their driving skills... regardless of their age, experience, gender, race, religion, ethnic background, level of education, financial status, or knowledge about the workings of an automobile, they all consider themselves above average drivers!
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"Ray O" <rokigawaATtristarassociatesDOTcom> wrote in message

I only know of one person that actually said that. Cadillac Catera and after a week he knew it was not the car for him. Kept it about two years though.

I'm not just above average, I'm way above average.
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"Ray O" <rokigawaATtristarassociatesDOTcom> wrote in message

Actually I can think of four vehicles I wish I had not purchased within 90 days - '78 Ford Fairmont, '81 Plymouth Reliant, '82 Toyota Cressida, '83 Mazda 626. The Reliant and Cressida were just giant POS's . They were by far the two worst cars I ever owned - but for different reasons, the Reliant was totally unreliable but performed well when it ran, the Cressida was both unreliable and drove like a POS. The Fairmont was reliable but I just didn't like it (too generic?). After driving the Mazda for 2 weeks I could never get comfortable in it and hated driving it on trips. I sold it to my Sister and she really liked it, so I guess it was just personal taste.
I don't think you guys are interpreting the survey correctly. They don't ask if you like the car, they you how many problems you have had. Unless you think Toyota owners are bigger liars than Chrysler owners, the results should be comparable.
Ed
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Actually the answer to the Survey is not simply yens or no. It is more akan to:
Complete satisfîmes ___
Somewhat satisfied ___
Satisfied ___
Dissatisfied ___
Somewhat dissatisfied ___
Completely dissatisfied ___

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http://www.jdpower.com/corporate/news/releases/pressrelease.aspx?ID 08063
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