After falling off the top spot for a few quarters due to the massive recall crisis that started last year, Toyota Motors Co. is now once again the most considered auto brand among new-car shoppers, a new Kelley Blue Book study has found out. About 25% of new-vehicle shoppers who visited kbb.com indicated an interest in Toyota, according to the third-quarter Market Intelligence Brand Watch study.
Following close behind are Ford with 24% and Honda with 23% interest. Toyota bested other brands in all vehicle segments between the first quarter of 2007 and the third quarter of 2009.
But between the fourth quarter of 2009 and the second quarter of 2010 (coinciding with its global recall crisis), Toyota dropped to second place. During these quarters, Ford held the top spot.
It’s notable too that for the third quarter of 2010, Toyota also was most considered in the nonluxury sedan/coupe/hatchback category and in the nonluxury SUV/CUV category.
The attention for Toyota's trucks has increased however, it still is second to Ford, which has gained a rush of interest since the second quarter of this year.
In a statement, Bob Carter, sales chief for the Toyota brand in the U.S., said that this study strongly indicates that consumers recognize its commitment to earn their confidence in the safety, quality and value of its vehicles.
James Bell, executive marketing analyst for kbb.com, said that these figures suggest that Toyota is recovering from its public perception crisis but it has yet to indicate a complete turnaround. [via autonews - sub. required]