J.D Power Asia Pacific has released a new 2013 India Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) for the luxury car brands. According to the survey, the luxury carmakers in India are not doing enough during the sales experience to significantly differentiate themselves from the mass-market automakers.
For the first time a study measures sales satisfaction separately in two vehicle segments - luxury and mass market. It examines seven factors that contribute to new-vehicle buyers overall satisfaction with their sales experience - delivery process; delivery timing; salesperson; sales initiation dealer facility; paperwork; and deal. The luxury vehicle market in India has grown in recent years, with sales expected to reach 26,000 units in 2013 and increase to 84,000 units by 2020, according to LMC Automotive. Overall sales satisfaction in the luxury segment averages 873 index points on a 1,000-point scale, 32 points higher than the mass market average. However, satisfaction among luxury vehicle buyers whose overall sales experience only met their expectations is not significantly different than those among mass-market buyers (842 vs. 834, respectively). BMW ranks highest among luxury brands in sales satisfaction in India with a score of 881. BMW performs particularly well in the dealer facility, sales initiation and salesperson factors. The study finds that adherence to a comprehensive and consistent implementation of 18 sales standards among salespersons has a direct impact on satisfaction for all luxury vehicle buyers. Vehicle buyers expect all 18 sales processes to be implemented in order to mitigate dissatisfaction. This is in contrast to the mass-market segment, where implementation of at least 15 processes is able to derive positive impact on overall purchase satisfaction. The study also finds key differences in new-vehicle shopping behavior between the luxury and mass market segments. Key drivers of luxury-vehicle purchases are overall vehicle performance and safety, while drivers of mass market-vehicle purchases are brand reputation and reliability. Luxury-vehicle buyers are more likely to use the Internet during their shopping process, with 34 percent going online to search for vehicle features and specifications, compared with 28 percent of mass market-vehicle buyers. More than two-thirds (68%) of luxury buyers have two or more vehicles in their household. Additionally, 93 percent of luxury-vehicle buyers opt to finance their purchase, compared with 72 percent of mass market-vehicle buyers. The 2013 India Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study for the luxury brands is based on responses from 253 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between September 2012 and April 2013. The study was fielded from March to July 2013.