WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. (Sept. 20, 2004) — Consumers surveyed by J.D. Power and Associates for its annual satisfaction study rated the Michelin brand highest in three out of four original equipment tire segments, while Goodyear was ranked highest in the fourth segment.
The 2004 Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study ranks tire manufacturers based on the experiences of first-year vehicle owners in four segments: luxury/sport; mass-market/non-luxury; pickup/full-size van; and sport-utility vehicle. Overall satisfaction is calculated using a tire satisfaction index that includes tire appearance, tire handling, tire ride, tire traction and tire wearability.
Michelin ranked highest in the following segments: luxury/sport, followed by Dunlop and Pirelli, respectively; mass-market/non-luxury, followed by General and Goodyear; and SUV, followed by BFGoodrich and Yokohama. Goodyear topped the pickup/full-size van, followed by BFGoodrich and Michelin in a tie.
J.D. Power said its study found that approximately 19 percent of respondents experience a problem with their tires in the first year of ownership, and tire satisfaction decreases substantially when a problem with one or more tires occurs.
Of the 10 percent of respondents who had to replace one or more tires, satisfaction drops an average of 200 index points compared to the industry average. Satisfaction also drops from one year to two years of ownership, which the research firm said was likely due to an increase in mileage, wear and associated problems. The study is based on responses from 31,557 vehicle owners who purchased their vehicles in 2002 and 2003.
“Maintaining high customer satisfaction is critical to tire manufacturers, particularly in the first two years of ownership, due to its impact on repurchase intent,” said Carolyn Picard, J.D. Power's director of automotive components research. “Intent to replace tires with the same brand drops by an average of 11 percent among those who had to replace a tire compared to those who didn't.”