AGOURA HILLS, Calif. (Oct. 26, 2001)—Independent garages gain the greatest share of business from customers dissatisfied with auto dealerships, according to J.D. Power and Associates' newly released 2001 CSI-Service Retention Study.
The study, based on responses from more than 41,000 owners of 1997 model-year vehicles, found that how customers are treated by auto dealerships during their first three years of warranty service dictates whether they return to those outlets for post-warranty service and repairs. Lexus, which retains 84 percent of service customers, ranks highest in service satisfaction among post-warranty customers for the second year in a row, J.D. Power said.
Independent garages captured a 21-percent-share of business among post-warranty customers.
“Independent garages, which collectively follow Lexus in overall service satisfaction, often provide a high level of personal service that instills confidence and trust in their customers,” said John Harbicht, senior manager of service satisfaction at J.D. Power and Associates. “Customers who use these facilities are very pleased with the quality of the service they receive and the ease and convenience of using these garages.”
Exxon stations follow garages in overall satisfaction. Jiffy Lube has the largest number of defectors from dealerships, with 14 percent of non-dealer service, due primarily to the facility's high level of convenience.
Among non-luxury auto dealers, the most loyal customers are Saturn dealers, retaining 73 percent of customer-paid service and showing the highest service satisfaction.