IRVINE, Calif. — Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com announced that Hyundai ranked No. 1 in brand loyalty during the second quarter, ousting traditional winners Honda and Toyota. The new ranking also marks the first time since KBB began tracking the data that Hyundai has held the No. 1 spot for an entire quarter.
Many of the auto industry's top brands have struggled to retain customers, but the vehicle pricing Website reports that Hyundai’s loyal consumer base has remained constant thanks to aggressive marketing campaigns and product redesigns like the 2011 Sonata and 2011 Elantra.
For the second quarter, Hyundai's brand loyalty was at 52.3 percent. Honda’s was at 49.7 percent and Toyota’s was at 47.7 percent. Rounding out the top five for were Ford at 45.4 percent and Subaru at 44.8 percent.
Kia also made gains during the quarter, as it is one of only two brands that are up in brand loyalty year over year along with Mini. Both Kia and Mini are succeeding in loyalty for reasons similar to Hyundai, including attractive redesigns, additional models and aggressive marketing campaigns.
"Hyundai's product renaissance is benefitting the company not just by attracting an all-new customer base, but by helping them to retain current loyal Hyundai owners, as well," said Arthur Henry, market intelligence manager for Kelley Blue Book. "This latest brand loyalty analysis from KBB.com is a testament to the power of attractive vehicle designs and intriguing marketing in the minds of in-market car shoppers as they consider their next vehicle."
Several luxury brands, including Mercedes-Benz, Audi and BMW, also improved their loyalty ratings, which KBB analysts attribute to luxury owners returning to the brands they enjoyed when the economy was booming.
Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence examines brand loyalty while consumers are still in the shopping phase, according to the company. For this analysis, loyalty is defined as owners of the brand who are currently shopping the same brand for their next vehicle.