Hyundai gains in measure of brand loyalty
The Hyundai brand continues to solidify its image among auto shoppers.
Kelley Blue Book said that Hyundai toppled Honda and Toyota to take the top spot in brand loyalty, according to the auto information company’s measure of brand loyalty during the second quarter of this year.
While Hyundai has once before held that position for a month, it was the first time since Kelley began tracking the data that Hyundai has held the No. 1 spot for an entire quarter.
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Hyundai, once known for producing among the least reliable vehicles sold in America, has retooled its lineup and is picking up market share, mostly because of its hot-selling sedans, the Sonata and the Elantra.
Through the first six months of 2011, Hyundai’s U.S. sales have risen 26% compared with the same period a year earlier, to 327,797 vehicles, according to Autodata Corp. Its growth is more than double the rate of the entire industry in the U.S. this year.
Hyundai held a 5.1% market share during the first half of this year, up from 4.6% a year earlier.
During the second quarter, Hyundai’s brand loyalty was at 52.3%. Honda was 49.7% and Toyota was 47.7%. Rounding out the top five were Ford with 45.4% and Subaru at 44.8%.
Kelley Blue Book defined loyalty by looking for owners of a brand who are currently shopping the same brand for their next vehicle. This includes data from consumers who view a trade-in page or private party page in addition to a new-car page on Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com auto information website.
“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, an analyst at Kelley Blue Book.
-- Jerry Hirsch
Photo: Hyundai Elantra. Credit: Hyundai