The survey has been performed in order to determine quality levels of new vehicles by contacting owners of various models and asking them strategic questions in order to gauge the average number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100).
Over 80 percent of the passenger vehicle segment takes part in the survey while over 86 percent of light commercial vehicles sold are also included, meaning, this survey is very relevant to the motoring industry.
In terms of product quality, the industry’s average number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) has remained around the 40-mark since 2011, which is a huge improvement over the 140 problems per 100 vehicles recorded in 2005.
“The fact that quality levels are maintained at such a high level is driven to a large degree by the highly competitive nature of the market,” explained the Ipsos Automotive Business Unit Director, Patrick Busschau. “Quality has always been seen as an important differentiator between brands and the various vehicle categories, but now we see high volume small cars faring as well as luxury models in terms of product quality, which is good news for the general consumer,” he added.
Mercedes-Benz fared well in the 2014 study. It had the three highest quality models in the E-Class with 10 faults, C-Class coupé and the C-Class petrol with 14 faults. Mercedes-Benz also collected two gold awards as best luxury brand overall and best factory making passenger cars in South Africa.
The best volume passenger car brand overall and Gold Award winner for 2014 is Mazda, which recorded a PP100 score of 24. Toyota and Opel claimed the Silver Award with a 28 and 29 fault-average respectively. Bronze awards went to Chevrolet with 35, Ford with 37 and Volkswagen with 37.
This year, Mercedes-Benz has come out as the best luxury brand overall with a PP100 score of 20. BMW came in second with 23 and Audi third with 27 faults. Mercedes-Benz also received the Gold Award for the best local plant making passenger cars with a score of 15, while BMW took silver with a score of 19 and Toyota took bronze with 28.
Toyota took Gold Awards in the light commercial vehicle category with best LCV brand overall with a PP100 score of 39, best one-ton single cab brand overall with a score of 39, best one-ton double-cab brand overall with 39 and best local plant manufacturing light commercials with 38.
As South Africans, we should be proud that locally-produced passenger cars had fewer problems per 100 vehicles than imported models, with scores of 31 and 36 problems respectively.