Overall APEAL Satisfaction in Japan Increases for Second Consecutive Year, J.D. Power Finds
Lexus Ranks Highest among Luxury Brands and MINI Ranks Highest among Mass Market Brands
TOKYO: 4 Oct. 2023 — The overall satisfaction score has improved to 671 (on a 1,000-point scale), up seven points from 2022, according to the J.D. Power 2023 Japan Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study,SM released today. Overall satisfaction has increased two years in a row—since 2021 when the study was redesigned—indicating that owners continue to be satisfied with their new vehicles.
“Satisfaction has increased in all 10 study categories since 2022, especially the powertrain category,” said Yuji Sasaki, director of the research division at J.D. Power. “Specifically, powertrain satisfaction has improved not only for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles [PHEVs] and electric vehicles [EVs], but also for internal combustion engine [ICE] vehicles and hybrid electric vehicles [HEVs]. Satisfaction with fuel economy also continues to improve for ICEs and HEVs. With the global increase in electrification of powertrains, technology has also evolved for traditional powertrains, including ICEs and hybrid powertrains, and in alignment with that, satisfaction with these types of powertrains has also increased.”
The study, now in its 13th year, measures owners’ emotional attachment and level of excitement with their new vehicle across 37 attributes. These attributes are aggregated to compute an overall APEAL Index score measured on a 1,000-point scale. The study complements the annual J.D. Power Japan Initial Quality StudySM (IQS) and the J.D. Power Japan Tech Experience Index (TXI) Study.SM
Following are key findings of the 2023 study:
- Infotainment systems lag: The smallest year-over-year improvement is in the infotainment category. Vehicle owners in Japan are more likely to experience problems related to the infotainment category, causing satisfaction to increase by only 4 points to 626 from 2022. Auto manufacturers need to work on improvements in quality in this category.
- Brand-new or fully redesigned models tend to satisfy customers: Brand-new or fully redesigned models are included in six of the nine rank-eligible segments and this year five of such models rank highest in their segment.
- Gap in satisfaction has widened: When vehicle owners experience quality issues, APEAL scores decrease. Among customers who do not have quality issues, satisfaction with their new vehicle averages 696 points, 52 points higher than among customers who do have quality issues (644). In the 2021 APEAL Study, the gap between such customers was 47 points (678 vs. 631, respectively). To improve satisfaction, it becomes increasingly important for automakers to develop and produce vehicles with fewer problems.
- Satisfaction with fuel economy increases and decreases: Satisfaction with fuel economy has increased for two years in a row, to 647 points for both ICE vehicles and HEVs (compared with 640 in 2022 and 631 in 2021), while decreasing for PHEVs (706 in 2023 and 722 in 2022) and EVs (574 in 2023 and 586 in 2022).
Lexus ranks highest in overall APEAL. MINI ranks highest among mass market brands.
Rankings by vehicle segment:
- Mini-car–Sedan: Suzuki Lapin
- Mini-car–Height Wagon: Nissan Sakura
- Mini-car–Super Height Wagon: Daihatsu Move Canbus
- Compact Car: Nissan Note
- Compact SUV: Mazda CX-3
- Midsize Car: Toyota Prius
- Midsize SUV: Nissan X-trail
- Compact Minivan: Toyota Sienta
- Minivan: Toyota Alphard
The 2023 Japan Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study, now in its 13th year, is based on responses from 21,647 users of new vehicles in the first two to 13 months of ownership.
The study, which complements the annual Japan Initial Quality Study (IQS) and the Japan Tech Experience Index (TXI) Study, is used extensively by manufacturers worldwide to help them design and develop more appealing vehicles and is used by consumers to help them in their purchase decisions. The study was fielded from May-June 2023.
About J.D. Power
J.D. Power is a global leader in consumer insights, advisory services and data and analytics. A pioneer in the use of big data, artificial intelligence (AI) and algorithmic modeling capabilities to understand consumer behavior, J.D. Power has been delivering incisive industry intelligence on customer interactions with brands and products for more than 50 years. The world's leading businesses across major industries rely on J.D. Power to guide their customer-facing strategies.
J.D. Power has offices in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. To learn more about the company’s business offerings, visit JDPower.com/business.
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