Car owners’ disappointment costs manufacturers ‘up to £25bn in sales’

A quarter of car owners defect to a different manufacturer when they replace their vehicle, according to new research, which suggests that brand loyalty among drivers is related to service.

The car manufacturers with the most satisfied customers were BMW, Honda, Mercedes and Audi, each of which had an approval rating of more than 80 per cent. The least popular were Fiat, Ford and Vauxhall. Fewer than 40 per cent of owners were happy with their cars.

Independent customer-loyalty consultancy TARP UK found that poor-quality service causes 25 per cent of drivers to choose another brand of car for their next purchase, costing car companies &£25bn in lost sales.

The survey found that 40 per cent of motorists in the second year of car ownership were less than satisfied with their current car, although 60 per cent were happy.

Drivers who are very satisfied are said to be four times more likely to buy the same brand of car again or recommend the make.

BMW also claimed top spot in the customer service stakes after 60 per cent of owners said they were satisfied with the service.

Overall, 29 per cent of car owners said they had had problems with their car in the past year.

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