Suzuki tops customer satisfaction survey

Japanese marque scores big praise in latest Canstar Blue poll.

Suzuki has stormed to the top of the pops in a new Australian customer satisfaction survey.

Canstar Blue’s poll of new vehicle buyers surveyed customers from 15 popular automotive brands in Australia, speaking with 2307 respondents who had purchased a new car from a dealership in the past three years.

Suzuki claimed top honours with a maximum five-star rating. It inched the Japanese brand ahead of Toyota, Mazda, Honda, Hyundai, Volkswagen and Kia, which each finished with a four-star rating. Further back was Audi, BMW, Ford, Holden, Mitsubishi, Nissan and Subaru, at three stars apiece.

Suzuki’s result is one star higher than its previous post in 2017. Kia was the only other marque to improve, by one star again.

The survey spoke to buyers about the driving experience, point-of-sale service, aftersales service, reliability, value for money and car servicing.

Overall, 90 percent of buyers said they were pleased with the prices they paid for their new vehicles, with the average sum now rated at $38,000 across the industry.

Most buyers weren’t afraid to try some friendly haggling, either; 80 percent confessed to negotiating, and 50 percent of respondents waited for a traditional sales period before they actively went shopping.

It seems price wasn’t the only deciding factor in new vehicle choice. Nineteen percent of those surveyed said the cost of a car decided their final decision, combining with running costs (16 percent), style (16 percent), lifestyle (15 percent), safety and features (13 percent), size (12 percent) and other reasons (9 percent).

“Suzuki came out on top with five stars for overall satisfaction, reliability and value for money, as well as four stars in most other areas,” a Canstar Blue press release said.

“Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota and Volkswagen all scored four stars for overall satisfaction. Audi, BMW, Ford, Holden, Mitsubishi, Nissan and Subaru all scored just three stars for overall satisfaction.”

On the driving experience front, Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz were front-runners, while Mazda and Volkswagen finished first in point of sales service.

Hyundai, Kia and Suzuki were rated best value for money and Toyota, Honda, Mercedes-Benz and BMW finished the full five-star rating for servicing.

Suzuki has enjoyed a moderate increase in sales. It comes after the introduction of a new Swift light car, including a well-received Sport variant.