• Thursday, February 22, 2024
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BusinessDay

New car shoppers pick Honda overall best

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For the second consecutive year, new car buyers have voted the Honda brand as the “Best Overall Brand” in the recent Kelley Blue Book’s (KBB) annual Brand Image Award study. The automakers also won the “Most Trusted Brand” honour for the third straight year.

To market international automotive industry watchers, Honda’s win did not come as a big surprise as the company boasted the highest average scores among all 12 Brand Watch factors. Areas where it performed well are affordability, “cool” factor, driving comfort, driving performance, durability, reliability, exterior styling, fuel efficiency, interior layout, prestige, sophistication, reputation, ruggedness and safety.

Strong consumer perception of the Accord, Civic, CR-V and Odyssey helped drive Honda’s success in earning the top honour among all automakers, KBB said. Considering that Honda has also won the award for the ‘Most Trusted Brand’ among non-luxury shoppers three years in a row, this according to the publication did not come as a huge surprise.

Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager of the Honda automobile division for American Honda, in a statement remarked: “A brand is really built over the long haul through consumers’ experiences with its products, and Honda is committed to delivering class-leading vehicles that provide lasting enjoyment and value to our customers.”

He also added that Honda simply embraces the challenge of being a brand that people can trust. In the luxury category, Mercedes-Benz captured the sales crown from BMW who last year was crowned.

Mercedes obtained the top average brand watch factor scores among all luxury makes and was “highly regarded with its strong line-up and performance AMG variants,” KBB stated. Ford reclaimed the top spot among truck shoppers, ousting last year’s winner, Toyota, from the best overall truck brand category.

Ford has won five out of six times since inception of the Kelley Blue Book award. The F-150 and Super Duty F-250 and F-350 also helped the manufacturer earn back the award for 2014, as truck shoppers ranked the brand highest among all other truck brands.

KBB.com secured responses from more than 12,000 new car and truck shoppers to get their opinions about various brands and the awards was broken down into 13 categories that divides potential buyers in the luxury and non-luxury purchasers. Kelley Blue Book, also known as KBB, gives out awards in 13 categories.

In Nigeria, while Stallion Motors is in charge of Honda brand, Coscharis Motors, Weststar Associates and RT Briscoe own the franchise for BMW, Mercedes and Ford brands respectively. The companies have also posted good market support in the past years.

Mike Ochonma