Volvo Beats Mercedes In J.D. Power Quality Ratings--On Home Turf

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J.D. Power and Associates released a new report last week ranking Volvo in the number one spot, ahead of Mercedes in a survey of Customer Satisfaction in the German marque's homeland.

The 2011 Germany Vehicle Ownership Satisfaction Survey, which polled over 17,000 car owners, was conducted between January and March of 2011. The study ranked two-year old vehicles based on vehicle quality and reliability, vehicle appeal, cost of ownership and service satisfaction.  Volvo scored 841 points out of a possible 1000, edging out Mercedes' score of 839. 

This year's score is a step up for the Swedish brand, which placed seventh in the 2010 rankings.  J.D. Power attributes the first place showing to a strong finish in the vehicle appeal measurements.  Rounding out the top five are Mazda with 831 points, Mini with 827 and Honda with 824.  J.D. Power notes that Mazda scored especially well on quality and reliability.

The bottom five were Smart with 779 points, Daihatsu with 777, Mitsubishi with 776, Citroën with 774, and Chevrolet receiving the lowest score, 730.  According to the report, the industry average is 807.

Mercedes did make a strong showing in individual segments of the report, taking top honors in overall satisfaction in the categories of Compact Executive with the C-Class with 837 points, a first place showing for the E-Class with a score of 846 and second place for the S-Class in the Executive Luxury segment with 832.   Mercedes also listed first in the SUV segment with the M-Class, scoring 854 points.

The highest score of any individual model in the study was the Mazda3, which took the Lower Medium class with a score of 862.

The study notes that overall quality has declined in Germany from 2010's score of 813 to this years average, noting that owners who are "delighted" with their experience are more than two-and-one-half times more likely to return for service than ones who have left unsatisfied.

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