Chevrolet, Audi and Kia top J.D. Power 2017 Tech Experience Index Study
Safety technologies score high, while navigation systems disappoint.
Jon WongFormer editor for CNET Cars
Jon Wong was a reviews editor for CNET Cars. He test drove and wrote about new cars and oversaw coverage of automotive accessories and garage gear. In his spare time, he enjoys track days, caring for his fleet of old Japanese cars and searching for the next one to add to his garage.
Results of the J.D. 2017 Power Tech Experience Index Study have been released, with Chevrolet and Audi having top showings in two segments apiece, while Lincoln, Kia and Hyundai each claiming one.
The study that began last year, monitors owner satisfaction with new vehicle technology in both premium and non-premium segments, scoring them on a 1,000-point scale. In particular, driver experience and usage of 35 technologies are measured at 90 days of ownership. Major scored categories include entertainment and connectivity, comfort and convenience, driving assistance, collision protection, navigation and smartphone mirroring.
Key takeaways from the study, based on survey results from more than 19,500 owners and lessees of all-new or redesigned models within the past three years, are that people are most satisfied with safety technologies such as collision-protection systems, blind-spot warning and backup cameras. At the other end of the spectrum, navigation systems left owners least satisfied.
Satisfaction with basic interactions with climate, infotainment, seat and cluster readouts has also declined compared to last year dropping an average of 83 points, showing that owners are having a more difficult time working with common controls compared to the year before.
For the second year in a row, the Chevrolet Camaro took top honors in the midsize segment, while its Chevrolet Tahoe stablemate scored the highest marks among large vehicles. Audi's A3 reigned supreme in satisfaction over the small premium segment, with the Q7 crossover coming out on top in the midsize premium class. Other highest-performers include the Kia Niro in the small segment, Hyundai Elantra in the compact category and the Lincoln MKC in the compact premium class.
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