Servicing my car – who is best?

Purchasing & Servicing quality awards

Ipsos, the market research company, measures the Competitive Customer Experience of car owners each year.

Its divided into the buying experience and the quality of servicing. It is split between cars and LCV’s (or bakkies and vans).

Here are the car results for this year.

PURCHASING

Ipsos interviewed more than 23 000 customers about their purchasing and servicing experience in 2015, representing more than 75% of all cars sold, or 15 of the locally available brands. The missing brands include BMW and Hyundai/ Kia.

The biggest changes over the previous survey include a 3.7% improvement in the free of faults result but a 4.7% drop in the handling of queries or faults. So the dealers need a bit of polishing, but the manufacturers are improving.

Over time the quality has been improving and now sits at almost 95% for the industry, up from around 90% in 2004.

The gold medal achievers in the sales department are VW and Audi. GM, Mercedes Benz, Nissan and Toyota come next. Ford, Lexus, Renault and Honda also did well.

sales time

“The achievements by the industry overall in our ongoing study over the past four years have been outstanding and are a tribute to staff at the manufacturers’ head offices who are responsible for training and supporting the dealers as well as for the commitment of the dealers themselves. In particular the consistent excellence of Audi, Isuzu, Nissan, Toyota and Volkswagen brands must be highlighted for special praise,” said Patrick Busschau, the Ipsos SA Automotive Business Director. “It is amazing how the retail industry manages to lift the bar ever higher each year.”.

SERVICING

The Servicing Experience over Time has improved by 1% a year over the past decade and has now reached 90%.

Customers feel the are more appreciated and  are happy that they are offered transportation to the next destination. They are unhappy about the preparation of the staff and contact about progress.

Interestingly there is no difference between men and women concerning their perception of the servicing experience.

There are big differences between the races.

Servicing Race

Asian, not Indian, customers are the most unhappy while whites are happiest.

And the servicing awards go to:

Servicing winnersAudi received a platinum award for sustained customer satisfaction in both the passenger car purchasing and servicing experience categories, having won gold awards every year from 2012-2015. The Volkswagen brand received a platinum award for the purchasing experience with cars and LCVs from 2012-2015.
Other brands to receive platinum awards were Isuzu for the LCV purchasing experience, while Toyota and Nissan received these prestigious awards for LCV servicing in the period 2012-2015.

It is interesting the BMW withdrew from the research and that Hyundai may be sure of their product quality but not about their customer relations.

 

Opel Astra OPC

GM has added Opel’s performance Astra OPC, the most powerful production Astra produced to date, to its passenger vehicle range. The Astra OPC compliments the Corsa OPC in the Opel range in South Africa to offer buyers a high performance option in both the small and compact hatch sectors. This latest offering from OPC (Opel Performance Centre) is powered by a 206 kW turbocharged direct injection 2,0 litre engine with maximum torque of 400 Nm. This enables the Astra OPC to sprint from 0-100 km/h in just 6 seconds with an electrically governed top speed of 250 km/h.

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This latest high-performance turbocharged engine produces a healthy 104 kW per litre – power delivery that is in the realm of full blown competition engines and the highest specific power output per litre of any Opel petrol production car. This is 12% more than the previous Astra OPC with torque improved by 25%.

This sporty powerhouse of an engine is based on the latest Opel 2,0 litre engine architecture designed to offer more-for-less in terms of engine size and performance delivery. In keeping with this philosophy the new Astra OPC delivers its higher power and torque with fuel consumption that is reduced by 12% compared to the previous model and with CO2 emissions that are 14% lower. Average fuel consumption recorded by Opel engineers in tests is just 8,11 l/100km – a remarkable achievement for an engine with this level of performance. CO2 emissions are 189 g/km.

Wheels are 20” alloy fitted with 245/35 R20 tyres as standard. The specification of the gas filled dampers is to a unique OPC standard while all mounting bushings are of a stiffer specification than on the standard Astra. Springs are of a stiffer rate than those found across the Astra and Astra GTC range.

Opel Astra OPC                                                        R435,000

GM Trailblazer starts production

The first production units of the all-new Chevrolet Trailblazer are now rolling off General Motors Thailand’s (GM) production line in Rayong.

The range-topping LTZ model has the 2.8-liter Duramax turbo-diesel engine. The Rayong plant is the first in the world to build the new Trailblazer, which will be sold in Thailand and exported to more than 50 markets across Southeast Asia and beyond, including South Africa.

Based on General Motors’ new global body-on-frame midsize truck architecture, the Trailblazer is a seven-seater. GM says it has superior off-road capabilities.

“The Trailblazer is strong and capable. Ready for rugged off-road conditions but equally well-mannered for city and long distance road trips,” said Martin Apfel, President of GM Thailand/Southeast Asia. “It’s yet another world-class Chevrolet product that demonstrates the capability, commitment and attention to detail of our dedicated Thai workforce.”

“The Trailblazer will be built in Thailand for Thailand, and soon also make its way into the rest of the world. And delivery of the Trailblazer to our customers in Thailand starts right now,” Apfel continued.

Chevrolet Aveo the entry level Chev

The Aveo complements the new Chevrolet Sonic in GM’s small vehicle pricing structure with the two models satisfying distinctly different sub-sectors of the segment.

The Chevrolet Aveo model range offers a choice of three Hatch and three Sedan variants with a choice of either ‘L’ or ‘LS’ trim. All are powered by a 1,6 litre 16-valve DOHC engine that produces maximum power of 77 kW @ 5800 r/min and peak torque of 145 Nm @ 3600 r/min. Electronic throttle control and multi-port fuel injection ensure excellent fuel economy and low emissions. By way of example, tests conducted by Chevrolet engineers delivered a combined cycle fuel consumption of just 7,3l/100km for the Aveo Hatch.

Drive is via a 5-speed manual transmission on L and LS models with a 4-speed automatic option offered for the LS level Hatch and Sedan. The Automatic transmission is electronically controlled and has a “Hold Control” feature that assists in reducing the tendency of the transmission to hunt between ratios.

Standard specification on all models includes: Variable rate power steering; ABS braking; 14 inch steel rims fitted with 185/60 R14 tyres; air-conditioning; tilt adjustable steering wheel; driver’s side airbag; transponder key immobiliser system; and colour coded bumpers.

On the LS specification models the following are included: Roof spoiler; height adjustable driver’s seat; power operated front windows; central locking; passenger airbag; MP3 compatible radio/CD combination with auxiliary input.

The service interval for the Chevrolet Aveo is 15 000km. Warranty cover with Roadside Assistance is for three years or 100 000km.