Consumer Reports comes out with an annual Car Brand Perception Survey that compares each major automotive brand in seven overall categories: quality, safety, value, performance, design, tech innovation, and eco-friendliness. The survey is conducted by phone among several thousand random households nationwide and scores the brands based on how often the survey takers mention them. For the 2011 and 2012 reports, Toyota took top honors, and has since showed no signs of slowing down. In fact, they haven't been slowing down for awhile...Toyota had top marks in 2009 and 2010 as well! We're happy to say that they've again held on to the title of most favored brand by consumers. It's no surprise, considering the popularity of vehicles such as the Camry, which Consumer Reports gave a "recommended" review of in their February issue last year.
According to the findings, some of the other big names that consistently rank well include Ford, Honda, and Chevrolet. The scoring tends to be pretty close and is averaged out using a point system. Factors such as quality, safety, and value are weighted more heavily over the others, which helped to give Toyota the boost it needed to remain on top.
|Each automaker was scored by the number of times survey takers mentioned their specific brand when answering a question, weighted by category importance, and divided by the total unaided awareness of the brand.|
Toyota vehicles have always been known for having a strong resale value and bang for your buck in terms of MPG. Vehicles such as the Corolla, which gets 34 highway MPG for under $20k, or the Prius, which Consumer Reports named as their choice for "best overall value", definitely contributed towards the high ratings Toyota received.
What's surprising is that technology and innovation ranked among the bottom of the weighted categories, even though smart phone connectivity and infotainment systems are becoming more and more popular. We're getting to a point where it's hard to find new cars that don't have these features (or perhaps consumers take these tech features for granted).
Do you agree that price and safety should be the most important aspects to consider when buying a new car? How do you think automakers can continue to innovate in the next year to make the list again?