SINGAPORE: 3 September 2012 — Longer times to complete the sales and delivery process and lack of commitments from dealers on delivery issues have resulted in lower sales satisfaction among those who purchase new vehicles in Malaysia, according to the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2012 Malaysia Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) StudySM released today.
Now in its 10th year, the study measures new-vehicle owner satisfaction with the sales and delivery experience and examines seven factors that contribute to overall satisfaction. In order of importance, these factors are: delivery process; delivery timing; paperwork; dealer facility; salesperson; deal; and sales initiation. Performance is reported as an index score based on a 1,000-point scale, with a higher overall score indicating greater satisfaction with the new-vehicle sales and delivery process. Overall sales satisfaction in Malaysia averages 781 in 2012, a decline of 18 points from 2011.
While the overall implementation of sales standards has increased across the industry in Malaysia, fewer new-vehicle owners are highly satisfied with their purchase experience in 2012, compared with 2011. Satisfaction has particularly declined among first-time new-vehicle owners.
The study also finds that the amount of time it took the salesperson to complete the sales transaction and to deliver the vehicle has increased from 2011. The proportion of owners who indicate that vehicle delivery took more than two weeks--after which overall satisfaction decreases below industry average levels--has notably increased to 41 percent in 2012 from 32 percent in 2011.
"In the context of supply issues and sustained demand for new vehicles, and in a market where first-time buyers constitute the majority of new owners, the ability of dealers to meet expectations with regard to time, and thus to shorten the sales and delivery process, is essential," said Mohit Arora, executive director at J.D. Power Asia Pacific, Singapore.
Overall, 18 percent of owners say the salesperson was unable to commit to a specific delivery time, an increase of 7 percentage points year over year. Among owners who were promised a specific delivery date, 25 percent say the delivery time took longer than promised, with an average delay of two weeks. In addition, the study finds that salespersons spent less time at delivery and that 8 percent of the time, the delivery was handled by an employee other than the salesperson with whom the deal was signed.
"Those who buy a new vehicle expect accurate estimates on delivery times and strong commitments from their salesperson to accompany them closely throughout the sales and delivery process," said Arora. "They are sensitive to attempts by the salesperson to pressure them into paying more than they wanted for their new vehicle, as well as to also wait longer than they expected for delivery of the vehicle, resulting in weaker performance in both of these metrics in 2012."
Among the 10 brands included in the study, Nissan ranks highest with a score of 796. Nissan performs particularly well in four of the seven factors: deal, salesperson, paperwork and delivery timing. Honda (795), Toyota (790), Volkswagen (786) and Proton (783) follow in the rankings, each performing better than the industry average. Honda performs particularly well in the sales initiation, dealer facility and delivery process factors. All makes have declined in overall SSI scores, compared with 2011.
The study also finds that 48 percent of owners who are "delighted" (providing a rating of 10 on a 10-point scale) with the sales and delivery process say they "definitely will" recommend their purchase dealer. In contrast, only 5 percent of owners who are "disappointed" (a rating between 1 and 5) say the same.
"As more than two-thirds of new-vehicle owners in Malaysia use advice from their friends and relatives or owners of the same make when shopping for their new vehicle, positive word of mouth is vital for dealers to increase their sales," said Arora. "Delighting owners during their purchase experience is key to ensuring advocacy for their purchase dealer and vehicle brand."
The 2012 Malaysia SSI Study is based on responses from 2,451 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between August 2011 and April 2012. The study was fielded between February and June 2012.
About J.D. Power Asia Pacific
J.D. Power Asia Pacific has offices in Tokyo, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai and Bangkok that conduct customer satisfaction research and provide consulting services in the automotive, information technology and finance industries. Together, the five offices bring the language of customer satisfaction to consumers and businesses in China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan and Thailand. Information regarding J.D. Power Asia Pacific and its products can be accessed through the Internet at www.jdpower.com. Media e-mail contact: email@example.com
About J.D. Power and Associates
Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services company operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, Web intelligence and customer satisfaction. The company's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.
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