The latest survey by J.D. Power & Associates finds customer satisfaction is up at Canadian dealership service departments.
Audi dealerships topped the annual ranking of consumer satisfaction, earning 833 points in a 1,000-point scale. Other dealerships above the average industry ranking of 791 points included Lexus, BMW, Volkswagen, Acura, and Kia.
NAPA Autopro shops, in second place overall with 827 points, was the highest ranking aftermarket service provider on the list.
The performance of dealerships is particularly notable, according to analysts at J.D. Power because the new-car industry has faced a number of existential challenges this year, including sagging new-vehicle sales, temporary closures, and operational challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The study focused on the maintenance and repair of vehicles four to 12 years old.
According to survey findings, dealerships in Canada are improving service satisfaction while also increasing both market share and per-visit cost for maintenance and repair of those vehicles. J.D. Power reports that dealers not only capture 49% of all service visits for vehicles four years old and older but are experiencing an increase in cost-per-visit ($375 in 2020 vs. $323 in 2019) compared with non-dealer facilities ($241 in 2020 vs. $222 in 2019).
The high cost-per-visit means dealerships capture 60% of service revenue in Canada (approximately $5.5 billion). Furthermore, the dealership segment also sees a slight increase in the average number of customer visits (1.4 in 2020 vs. 1.3 in 2019), while non-dealer facilities have declined to 1.5 visits from 1.6 visits in 2019.
“Despite the challenges facing dealers and aftermarket service providers due to the pandemic, we’re seeing markedly improved levels of customer satisfaction this year,” said Virginia Connell, automotive research and consulting manager at J.D. Power Canada. “This is quite a testament to the commitment and resiliency of brands, dealers and independent service facilities to deliver an effective—and sometimes exceptional—service experience to their customers.”
According to the study, dealerships and non-dealers combined to achieve an overall satisfaction score of 791 (on a 1,000-point scale), up from 779 in 2019.