SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Jan. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Ford Motor Company took top honors in the 15th annual Polk Automotive Loyalty Awards, presented last night at the Automotive News World Congress in Detroit. Ford received awards in several categories, including: Overall Loyalty to Manufacturer; Overall Loyalty to Make; Ethnic Market Make – African-American; and Mid/Full-Size Pickup for its F-Series truck lineup, a repeat winner in the category. This year marks the first time Ford has won the Overall Loyalty to Manufacturer category since 1999.
Polk's Automotive Loyalty Awards are presented to OEMs that demonstrate a manufacturer's ability to retain owners over repeat buying cycles. "The 2010 awards are based on an analysis of 4.9 million return to market events during the 2010 model year," said Brad Smith, director of Polk's loyalty management practice. The model year runs from Oct. 1, 2009 through Sept. 30, 2010.
Loyalty is determined when a household that owns a new vehicle returns to market and purchases or leases another new vehicle of the same model or make. Polk tracks owner loyalty throughout the year and its Loyalty Management Practice regularly works with customers to effectively manage owner loyalty through the in-depth analysis of automotive shopping behaviors, related market influencers and development of retention strategies.
"At Ford, we strive to create a diverse portfolio from small cars to trucks that fit every customer's needs," said Ken Czubay, Ford vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. "We're honored Polk is recognizing Ford, as winners in both the manufacturer and make overall loyalty categories, as it's further proof that we're continuing to deliver the fuel-efficient, high quality products customers are looking for."
This year's awards also honored several OEMs with additional repeat winners across a variety of categories. "It's clear that the OEMs are paying attention to the importance of owner loyalty in this economy," said Stephen Polk, chairman, president and CEO of Polk. "We've seen many programs put into place to help them keep customers coming back – and it's paying off for them."
Even though industry volumes have been down the past few years, loyalty rates have increased. "Our research has shown that an OEM's core owner base is very loyal and represents a significant percentage of new vehicle sales during tough economic times," said Smith. "In addition, with an overall increase in loyalty to Asian brands, Ford winning top manufacturer honors is a testament to their success in the U.S. marketplace," he continued.
This year, the awards program had several repeat winners. A complete list of those honored during the program is as follows:
Overall Loyalty to Manufacturer
Ford Motor Company
Overall Loyalty to Make
Ethnic Market Make – African American
Ethnic Market Make – Asian
Toyota (repeat winner)
Ethnic Market Make – Hispanic
Most Improved Loyalty to Make
+5.9 percentage points
Vehicle Category Awards
MINI Cooper (repeat winner)
Toyota Prius (repeat winner)
Luxury Sports Car
Chrysler Town & Country (repeat winner)
Ford F-Series (repeat winner)
Subaru Forester (repeat winner)
Lexus RX (repeat winner)
Land Rover Range Rover (repeat winner)
About Polk's Loyalty Management Practice
Polk's Loyalty Management Practice aids manufacturers and retailers in effectively managing owner loyalty through the in-depth analysis of automotive shopping behaviors and related market influencers. Polk's analyses cover the entire U.S. market, and can identify likely defectors, before they leave, providing the opportunity to re-win their business prior to defection actually taking place. The practice is solely focused on helping manufacturers and dealers in retaining their owners through our diagnostic, predictive and advisory services.
Polk's solutions identify the key areas and potential causal factors influencing owner loyalty and are applied in the sales, service, finance and marketing functions within the automotive industry. For a recent report on automotive loyalty in the U.S. market, please see this link.
For a complete list of current and past Polk Automotive Loyalty Award winners, please visit http://usa.polk.com/Company/Loyalty/.
Polk is the premier provider of automotive information and marketing solutions. The organization collects and interprets global data, and provides extensive automotive business expertise to help customers understand their market position, identify trends, build brand loyalty, conquest new business and gain a competitive advantage. Polk helps automotive manufacturers and dealers, automotive aftermarket companies, finance and insurance companies, advertising agencies, media companies, consulting organizations, government agencies and market research firms make good business decisions. A privately held global firm, Polk is based in Southfield, Michigan with operations in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. For more information, please visit www.polk.com.