Press Release

Ample Functions and Equipment, Smaller Displacement Engines Make Vehicles in Japan More Appealing, J.D. Power Finds

Honda and Toyota Each Receive Two Segment-Level APEAL Awards

TOKYO: 5 Oct. 2022 — Overall satisfaction improves this year among owners of new vehicles, mostly driven by increases in the minivan and SUV segments, according to the J.D. Power 2022 Japan Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study,SM released today.

 

“The increase in overall APEAL scores shows us that vehicle owners in Japan have spoken and manufacturers have listened,” said Yuji Sasaki, director of the research division at J.D. Power. “However, amid continuing technological innovation, building more appealing vehicles—while working to not overcomplicate things—will become increasingly competitive.”

 

The study, now in its 12th year, measures owners’ emotional attachment and level of excitement with their new vehicle across 37 attributes. These attributes are aggregated to compute an overall APEAL Index score measured on a 1,000-point scale. The study complements the annual J.D. Power Japan Initial Quality StudySM (IQS) and the J.D. Power Japan Tech Experience Index (TXI) StudySM. This is the second Japan APEAL Study since last year when J.D. Power completely redesigned the study to redefine the appeal of new vehicles from the user’s perspective.

 

Following are key findings of the 2022 study:

 

  • APEAL score improves, driven by minivan and SUV segments: The industry average APEAL score improves to 664, 7 points higher than in 2021. This improvement is driven by increases in the minivan segment (663) and the SUV segment (693). Honda and Toyota have two models each that rank highest in model segments. Daihatsu, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and Volkswagen each have one segment-winning model.

 

  • Ample functions and equipment contribute to increase in satisfaction: The study shows that installing more driving assistance systems and infotainment-related functions increases satisfaction, however, satisfaction decreases if customers are not satisfied with the quality of these systems and functions. For instance, among Android Auto- or Apple CarPlay-enabled vehicles, satisfaction with the infotainment system is 654, 45 points higher than for vehicles which are not equipped with these systems (609). However, when customers have problems with Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, satisfaction drops to 590, which is even lower than for vehicles which are not equipped with these systems. To satisfy customers, it is important to have ample functions and equipment but they must be of sufficient quality to meet owner expectations.

 

  • Despite rising fuel prices, satisfaction with fuel economy and range improves: Satisfaction with fuel economy and range averages 641, up 10 points from 2021. Specifically, satisfaction improves for hybrids and gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles. This indicates that as fuel prices have escalated, fuel economy and range of vehicles with smaller displacement  engines and diesel-fuel vehicles whose fuel is relatively cheap are revalued. On the other hand, satisfaction with mini-cars and plug-in hybrids is flat or below satisfaction levels of a year ago. In particular, satisfaction with fuel economy and range averages 620 among mini-cars, which is lower than that among hybrids and gasoline-powered vehicles (647). This indicates that fuel economy is no longer necessarily a mini-car’s area of strength.

 

Highest-Ranked Brands

Lexus ranks highest in overall APEAL with a score of 749. MINI ranks highest among mass market brands with a score of 741.

Segment-Leading Models

  • Mini-car–Height Wagon segment: Honda N-ONE
  • Mini-car–Super Height Wagon segment: Honda N-BOX
  • Compact Car segment: Nissan Note
  • Compact SUV segment: Volkswagen T-Cross
  • Midsize Car segment: Mercedes-Benz A-Class
  • Midsize SUV segment: Toyota Harrier
  • Compact Minivan segment: Daihatsu Thor
  • Minivan segment: Toyota Alphard

 

The 2022 Japan Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study is based on responses from 20,797 purchasers of new vehicles in the first two to 13 months of ownership.

The study, which complements the annual Japan Initial Quality Study (IQS) and the Japan Tech Experience Index (TXI) Study, is used extensively by manufacturers worldwide to help them design and develop more appealing vehicles, and is used by consumers to help them in their purchase decisions. The study was fielded from May-June 2022.

 

About J.D. Power
J.D. Power is a global leader in consumer insights, advisory services and data and analytics. A pioneer in the use of big data, artificial intelligence (AI) and algorithmic modeling capabilities to understand consumer behavior, J.D. Power has been delivering incisive industry intelligence on customer interactions with brands and products for more than 50 years. The world's leading businesses across major industries rely on J.D. Power to guide their customer-facing strategies.

J.D. Power has offices in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. To learn more about the company’s business offerings, visit https://japan.jdpower.com/.

Media Relations Contacts
Kumi Kitami; Japan; 81-3-6809-2996; [email protected]
Geno Effler; USA; 714-621-6224; [email protected]

About J.D. Power and Advertising/Promotional Rules www.jdpower.com/business/about-us/press-release-info

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