Auto Industry Surged in 2013

September 11, 2013 Ryan James In the News

ACSI 2013The largest car makers in America, General Motors and Ford Motor Company, posted profits in 2013 which were better than in the past decade. Much of the improvement can be ascribed to models such as the Fusion and the Impala, which are competing well with their Japanese counterparts.

There are still several analysts worried that it might not be a continued smooth ride to the top, if customer satisfaction should falter. Let’s take a look at some of the data to see if worry is truly called for.

According to the American Customer Satisfaction Index, the overall level of satisfaction with the industry as a whole was indeed down 1.2 percent from last year. However, take note that it is still up a respectable 5.1 percent from the base-line year of 1994.

The cars on the index in the two top spots are luxury vehicles. The non-luxury brands with the highest satisfaction ratings are Honda and Toyota. There is only one American brand that actually has an above average satisfaction rating is GMC. Chrysler and Ford are level with the industry average, but Chrysler’s other brands, Jeep and Dodge, are ranked down near the bottom.

This poor showing for American cars is why some analysts believe continued improved profits could evaporate as customer satisfaction does not make the grade. David VanAmburg, the director of the American Customer Satisfaction Index discussed the issue in an interview with Automotive News:

“Right now, in the U.S. automakers are churning out cars like crazy. There certainly is some risk there that, on the one hand, they could be stuck with a lot of inventory. On the other hand, even if they’re not, what is there to build future growth on? Really, the only thing to build future sales growth on is to do a better job of satisfying customers. You’ve got win over some of those purchasers of Asian brands and European brands.”

American Customer Satisfaction Index, David VanAmburg, Ford, GMC,

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