US dealerships were ranked according to consumer satisfaction in the recently released 2009 Pied Piper Prospect Satisfaction Index. Mercedes-Benz topped the survey but read on as the rest of the results may surprise you. Fran O'Hagan, CEO of Pied Piper Management Co., LLC, dishes out on how American shoppers across the country were treated by these car companies during the tough economic climate the past year.
He said, "Nine out of ten car shoppers walk back out a dealership's door without buying." In general, salespeople are more helpful to the majority of shoppers who aren't yet ready to buy.
The PSI study sent 3,531 "mystery shoppers" into automotive dealerships nationwide. These anonymous shoppers then reported back on how they were treated when shopping for a new car, motorcycle or boat.
Next to Mercedes-Benz were Lexus, Jaguar, Saturn and Land Rover. Luxury brands got 9 out of the top 10 positions; GM's Saturn being the only non-luxury brand.
All five of the top 5 sales volume brands (Toyota, Ford, Chevrolet, Honda and Nissan) recorded improvements. Most improved from 2008 include Mercedes-Benz, Mini, Smart and Chrysler; Volvo scored at the industry average; and Hummer scored below the industry average.
Scoring well below the industry average were Saab and Pontiac. Most likely to suggest that shoppers consider a different brand were salespeople from Dodge, GMC, Chrysler, Kia and Pontiac. Least likely to lead shoppers elsewhere include Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Volvo, Lexus and Honda.