Dealer Optimism Increases in India as Passenger Car Sales Improve

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Toyota Ranks Highest in Dealer Satisfaction with Automotive Manufacturers

SINGAPORE: 28 May 2015 — Optimism among car dealers in India is growing as a majority expect their financial performance to improve this year, according to the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2015 India Dealer Satisfaction with Automotive Manufacturers Index (DSWAMI) StudySM released today.

The study finds that 56 percent of dealers in India estimate that their financial performance in fiscal year 2015 will improve, compared with fiscal year 2014. In the 2014 study, only 46 percent of dealers indicated that their financial performance will be better than last year.

“The last two or three years have been challenging for the passenger-car industry and subsequently for dealers across India as they grappled with low demand,” said Mohit Arora, executive director of J.D. Power Asia Pacific. “However, an uptick in sales for the first time in two years in fiscal year 2015 seems to have provided a much-needed respite for dealers who appear to perceive that the worst could be over.”

Now in its fifth year, the study measures dealer satisfaction with vehicle manufacturers or importers in India and identifies dealer attitudes regarding the automotive retail business. Overall dealer satisfaction is determined by examining nine factors: marketing and sales activities; product; vehicle ordering and delivery; sales team; parts; warranty claims; after-sales team; training; and support from the manufacturer.

Sales team (16%) is the highest-weighted factor in the 2015 study, increasing in importance by 6 percentage points year over year and contributing most to overall dealer satisfaction. Similarly, the marketing and sales activities factor has increased in importance year over year (15% vs. 9%, respectively).

“Prevailing market conditions have necessitated a closer working relationship between the dealers and manufacturers as they strive to achieve target sales volumes,” said Arora. “Support from manufacturers with marketing and sales activities, and cohesive working relationships between manufacturers’ sales teams and dealerships have helped drive dealer satisfaction.”

KEY FINDINGS

  • Overall dealer satisfaction with automotive manufacturers averages 826 points on a 1,000-point scale in 2015, down from 827 in 2014. Satisfaction improves across five of the nine study factors, most notably in parts, after-sales team and warranty claims.
  • In 2015, parts satisfaction improves more than any other factor year over year, with 83 percent of dealers indicating they received parts within 15 days of ordering, which is the highest percentage since 2012.
  • Product satisfaction, including the variety of models to meet market needs and frequency of product updates, declines the most (-14 points). More than one-fourth (27%) of dealers indicate their manufacturer does not adequately support them in introducing new models/ variants. Additionally, 24 percent of the dealers indicate their automaker does not have the range of vehicles to compete effectively in the market, an increase of 5 percentage points from 2014.
  • The top four ranked makes—Toyota, Maruti Suzuki, Honda and Hyundai— also have the highest proportion of dealers who are expecting to make a profit this year.

Study Rankings

Toyota ranks highest in dealer satisfaction, with a score of 919, outperforming other brands in eight of nine study factors. Maruti Suzuki ranks second with a score of 885, followed by Honda at 884. Nissan (756) improves overall by a substantial 63 points, while Hyundai (883) improves by 25 points in 2015.

The 2015 India DSWAMI Study is based on responses from 734 dealer principals or dealership general managers located in more than 250 cities throughout India. The study was conducted in association with the Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations (FADA) and was fielded between January and March 2015.

Media Relations Contacts

XingTi Liu; J.D. Power Asia Pacific; 08-Shenton Way, #44-02/03/04; Singapore, 068811; Phone +65-67338980; xingti_liu@jdpower.com.sg

John Tews; J.D. Power; Troy, Michigan 48083 USA; 001-248-680-6218; john.tews@jdpa.com

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