Loyalty is a great thing for automakers. Not only does it mean a person is more likely to come back and spend even more money with that OEM, it means that repeat buyer is also likely a cheerleader that introduces other people to the brand. For that reason, J.D. Power has started tracking automotive brand loyalty, and the results of its first study have just been published.
J.D. Power this week unveiled the results of its first Automotive Brand Loyalty Study. The group calculated the percentages in its study based on transactions from June 2018 to May 2019, including all model years of trade-in vehicles. The resulting value represents the percentage of buyers who bought or leased a new vehicle from an automaker after trading in an existing car.
What's interesting is the massive disparity in loyalty between mass-market and luxury brands. Subaru holds the top spot both in the mass market and overall, with 61.5% of buyers sticking around for another car. Toyota is hot on its heels at 59.5%, followed by Honda with 57.7%. Ram and Ford round out the mass-market top five with 56.2% and 54.0%, respectively. The lowest mass-market loyalty belongs to Smart (14.3%), but Chrysler (14.4%) and Fiat (16.5%) aren't far behind.
While Lexus might have the top loyalty for luxury automakers, its 47.6% loyalty rate would put it in eighth place if all OEMs were bunched together. Mercedes-Benz takes second place in luxury vehicles with 44.2% loyalty. BMW, Porsche and Audi were practically on top of one another with loyalty percentages of 43.6%, 43.5% and 43.3%, respectively. Jaguar takes the bottom luxury slot at 20.6%, followed by Infiniti (32.1%) and Volvo (33.3%).
Since this is J.D. Power's first year running this study, there's no insight to be found based on results from years past. But as we creep into 2020 and beyond, it will be interesting to see how things will inevitably shift. Lexus has strong positioning in just about every J.D. Power study, so we'll see if it can hold onto this crown, as well.