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J.D. Power and Associates Reports Lexus Rates Highest in Customer Service

July 13, 2001

For the fifth straight year, Lexus emerges with the highest levels of customer satisfaction, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2001 Customer Service Index (CSI) Study.

The study also concludes that record sales years and dealer downsizing efforts in some franchises contribute to decreased dealer service accessibility for customers. Joe Ivers, partner and executive director for J.D. Power, believes that dealers must handle the high volume of service requests to ensure success for the future. "Those dealers that stand out for inconvenience during these 'boom' times will see greater defection of customers to aftermarket (i.e. non-dealer) service facilities during the post-warranty ownership period," said Ivers.

Dealers who make the service intake process easy, on the other hand, enjoy the highest levels of customer satisfaction, according to the study.

"Since the first inclusion in the study in 1991, Lexus has definitely raised the bar on how dealer service is to be judged," said John Harbicht, senior manager of service satisfaction research at J.D. Power and Associates. According to Harbicht, Lexus makes it easy to get service appointments and vehicles are usually repaired on their first visit.

Saturn followed Lexus in the rankings for the second year. GM's Cadillac moved up four positions from 2000, achieving the third-highest ranking CSI.

The CSI study, began in 1981, suveys more than 56,000 new-vehicle owners and lessees, focusing on experiences with the dealer service department during the first three years of ownership, a duration representative of most warranty periods.

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