A strong performance here is key to long-term satisfaction – and Driver Power has now revealed which are Britain’s best car dealers in the eyes of owners.
Dealer satisfaction was ranked in seven categories: how helpful staff are, showroom cleanliness, the standard of work, value for money, technical knowledge, dealer attitude and the overall dealer experience.
Read on to see where your car brand sits… and let us know if you agree or disagree.
For the first time ever, Renault takes the crown for having the most satisfying car dealers in the UK. The French brand has jumped a full 12 places in 2016: several years of refocus by its UK operations, helped by the roll-out of an all-new line-up of cars, has been rewarded with this major honour. Dealers were rated best of all for helpfulness and attitude, while value for money was also praised. And that’s not all…
Renault’s value-led sister brand, Dacia, is second in the dealer satisfaction rankings! Many Renault dealers also run Dacia franchises and it seems the bargain-hunting buyers of Sanderos and Dusters are enjoying the same league-topping improvements in customer service as the parent Renault brand.
The serial winner of UK dealer satisfaction, Lexus, is thus relegated to third place. On the face of it, this could indicate Lexus dealers are becoming a teeny bit complacent, although Driver Power 2016 does still rank them best of all for standard of workmanship and technical knowledge. And there is only 0.04% splitting the Dacia and Lexus results…
The parent brand of Lexus, Toyota, is next up, with a 91.71% dealership satisfaction score. That’s 2% behind Lexus but still ahead of 27 other brands in the UK. Since the big recalls of a few years back, Toyota has developed a strong reputation for excellent customer service, with some forward-thinking new innovations helping it lead many other brands.
5: Alfa Romeo
The surprises in Driver Power 2016 keep on coming: 5th place is an extraordinary result for Alfa Romeo, a brand that’s been pilloried for dealer service in the UK. It’s improved a whopping 11 places in 2016 and this rewards the monumental effort by its retailers and comes just at the right time – the launch of its crucial Giulia BMW 3 Series rival is imminent…
Fiat dealers used to have a reputation as unenviable as Alfa Romeo, but it seems things are changing for this famous Italian brand too. New models such as the pretty 500X help, but while the ongoing success of the 500 city car is a given, it’s the strong service of the dealers that really helps keep customers coming back for more.
Suzuki has leapt up the Driver Power rankings this year. In moving from rock-bottom 31st to 7th, it’s the biggest single climber in the survey. Owners are particularly impressed with the sheer value for money offered by the Japanese brand. Well done, Suzuki dealers!
There are people who buy Hondas not because they’re Hondas, but because of the Honda dealer. Big outlets such as former Formula 1 driver Derek Warwick’s operation in Jersey are known for miles because of the great service they offer: a satisfaction score of nearly 91% is proof of that.
Kia’s class-leading seven-year warranty is a unique proposition: those who want to fully keep it up are encouraged to visit their local dealer much longer than the new car norm. But with a top-10 satisfaction rating, it seems Kia owners are more than happy to do so.
Another French brand in the top 10 for car dealer satisfaction. Peugeot’s undergone a brand revolution of its own, with the fine 308 being one of the key turnaround cars, so it’s good to see the dealer network has upped its game in support of this.
But what’s the worst car dealer work in Britain?
This is a truly terrible result for SEAT. The brand has plummeted to the bottom of the table for dealer satisfaction, with owners criticising every aspect of the experience, from helpfulness and attitude, to standard of workmanship, to cleanliness and atmosphere… the only slight consolation is a 25th-place ranking in value for money, but this is a rare not-bottom highlight in an otherwise depressing set of results for SEAT dealers.