Honda own­ers smil­ing

NT News - Motoring - - CARS GUIDE - By NEIL DOWLING

HONDA own­ers are Aus­tralia’s hap­pi­est mo­torists when it comes to newcar ser­vic­ing.

But most car own­ers say that poor re­pair work and high ser­vice costs by deal­ers are turn­ing them off some brands.

And trans­par­ent ser­vice costs — known as ‘‘capped­price ser­vic­ing’’ — have yet to change mo­torists’ minds.

Aus­tralians rated Honda, Subaru and Mazda re­spec­tively as the best man­u­fac­tur­ers for their stan­dard of ser­vice in a national Roy Mor­gan sur­vey.

In­ter­est­ingly, none of th­ese car mak­ers of­fer capped-price ser­vice pro- grams. Hyundai, which has a com­pre­hen­sive capped­price pro­gram, recorded a be­low-aver­age re­sult.

Only three car mak­ers (Ford, Toy­ota and Nis­san) with the pro­gram bet­tered the 85.8 per cent in­dus­try aver­age of cus­tomer ser­vice sat­is­fac­tion and one (Mit­subishi) equalled the aver­age.

But Hyundai, which recorded 80.3 per cent, ar­gues that the sur­vey was con­ducted be­fore it started its fiveyear pro­gram.

Hyundai Aus­tralia spokesman Bill Thomas says the sur­vey ran from March 2011 to March 2013.

‘‘We in­tro­duced capped­price ser­vic­ing in Au­gust last year, so we ex­pect that to have a pos­i­tive ef­fect go- ing for­ward,’’ he says. ‘‘We cer­tainly re­ceive a lot of great feed­back about our capped-price ser­vic­ing, and the stan­dard of ser­vice that our deal­ers are pro­vid­ing.

‘‘We have thou­sands of cus­tomers all across the coun­try who are sat­is­fied with both our ve­hi­cles and our af­ter-sales ser­vice.’’

Roy Mor­gan Re­search spokesman Nor­man Mor­ris says, of the top 10 brands by sales vol­ume, Honda driv­ers are most sat­is­fied with ser­vices (94.3 per cent), with sat­is­fac­tion lev­els al­most 10 per­cent­age points above the in­dus­try aver­age of 85.8 per cent.

‘‘Subaru and Mazda round out the top three with 90 per cent and 89.3 per cent to­tal sat­is­fac­tion re­spec­tively, closely fol­lowed by Ford on 89.1 per cent,’’ he says.

Mr Mor­ris says the own­er­ship ex­pe­ri­ence and re­lated war­ranty cov­er­age ‘‘is be­com­ing an in­creas­ingly im­por­tant fac­tor for com­pa­nies try­ing to sell new cars’’.

‘‘Many makes have in­tro­duced four- and five-year war­ranties in an at­tempt to woo po­ten­tial buy­ers from com­peti­tor brands,’’ he says.

‘‘How­ever, while over two in three Hyundai own­ers who re­turned the car to the deal­er­ship for ser­vic­ing were cov­ered by a five-year war­ranty, the make had the low­est ser­vice sat­is­fac- tion score — more than 5 per­cent­age points be­low the in­dus­try aver­age.’’

Mr Mor­ris notes that cars are be­com­ing more re­li­able, say­ing that the bulk of ve­hi­cle ser­vic­ing to­day is rou­tine, such as the re­place­ment of oil and other flu­ids, the tyres and the brake com­po­nents.

Mazda Aus­tralia says own­ers get the best own­er­ship ex­pe­ri­ence through a gen­uine Mazda ser­vice.

‘‘We have adopted Rec­om­mended Main­te­nance Ser­vice Pric­ing (RMSP) so that own­ers can plan ahead and see the ap­prox­i­mate cost of fu­ture ser­vices,’’ says Mazda Aus­tralia spokesman Steve Maciver.

‘‘Prospec­tive Mazda ow- ners can also speak to their Mazda dealer to get an in­di­ca­tion of the fu­ture ser­vic­ing costs as­so­ci­ated with the car they’re con­sid­er­ing.’’

Mazda’s RMSP shows that a 2010 Mazda3’s 70,000km ser­vice should cost $245.

Mazda’s sched­ule re­quires ser­vic­ing ev­ery six months and though not capped, the pro­gram shows ve­hi­cle own­ers what costs to ex­pect.

Roy Mor­gan says it in­ter­viewed 50,000 mo­torists from all around Aus­tralia in the sur­vey.

How­ever, while it asked for opin­ions on a scale from one to five, it did not ask each mo­torist what specif­i­cally had caused their level of sat­is­fac­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to a re­cent study, driv­ers of Hon­das are well ahead of the pack when it comes to new-car ser­vic­ing sat­is­fac­tion

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.