• Hyundai Creta.
    Hyundai Creta.
  • Ford EcoSport.
    Ford EcoSport.
  • Honda City.
    Honda City.
  • Mahindra Scorpio.
    Mahindra Scorpio.
  • Maruti Wagon R.
    Maruti Wagon R.
  • Nissan Micra.
    Nissan Micra.
  • Renault Kwid.
    Renault Kwid.
  • Tata Tiago.
    Tata Tiago.
  • Toyota Innova Crysta.
    Toyota Innova Crysta.
  • Volkswagen Polo.
    Volkswagen Polo.
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Indian women car buyers surveyed part 1

19th Oct 2017 7:00 am

A new survey by PremonAsia gives some great insights into what women car buyers look for in a car. We bring you the facts.

In India, car buying is considered to be a male-dominated arena. However, this isn’t to say that women are a small segment as they currently make up 15 percent of the total car buyers, a figure that’s only expected to rise. Driven by education, work, higher spending power and changing lifestyles, an increasing number of Indian women are taking to the wheel. So, what do they look for when purchasing cars? Are colour, cost and ease of driving really the main buying criteria? Or are their buying patterns completely different? PremonAsia, a consumer insights company conducted a country-wide survey to find out exactly that and much more.

OWNERSHIP EXPERIENCE SURVEY 

Overview

A survey of 3,945 individuals – comprising 3,350 women car owners and intenders (has a shared home car but intends to buy new one), and 595 men who bought a car for a woman – was conducted across 28 cities in India. They had their say in five keys areas of vehicle ownership – brand image, product performance, sales and delivery process, aftersales service, and cost of ownership, with appropriate weightings given to each of them. Here are some insights into the psyche of the woman car buyer.

Honda
Honda has come out on top, displaying good performance across most parameters. Product and cost of ownership seem to be trump cards for the brand and it aces the competition in these areas. Models which contributed towards positive sentiment for the brand included the City sedan and the Jazz hatchback, with strengths like seating comfort, infotainment and ease of usage. Honda’s ability to command a high resale value for longer periods also proved to be a major pull for women buyers. However, many felt that there is some scope for improvement in areas like the customer- handling skills of salesperson, vehicle delivery timing and a smoother aftersales experience.

Brand: 7.5/10
Product: 8.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 9/10
Aftersales Service: 8.5/10
Cost of Ownership: 8/10
Overall: 8.5/10

Volkswagen
The promise of German engineering seems to have bided well with women who voted VW a close second in the survey. Visually appealing products and innovative technology helped it post an industry-best score for brand image. Additionally, women also seem impressed with the sales experience VW offers, barring a timely vehicle delivery. Both the Polo and Vento came highly rated, but respondents did point out drawbacks like poor engine refinement and AC performance. Also, the higher costs involved in servicing and repairs are a major concern.

Brand: 8/10
Product: 7.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 9/10
Aftersales Service: 8.5/10
Cost of Ownership: 8.5/10 
Overall: 8/10

Nissan
Nissan scored a rating identical to that of Volkswagen. It lost out on brand image and there is a perception that it lacks exciting cars, along with innovative technology. However, where it does really well is in its ownership experience, posting high scores for overall sales experience and vehicle delivery timing, along with the highest score for aftersales service. Also, the costs of owning a Nissan are not very high and women buyers seem to like their reliable, fuel-efficient nature. Nissan’s Micra finds a strong likeability among women, especially for its adequate headroom, driving smoothness and interior design.

Brand: 7/10
Product: 7.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 8.5/10
Aftersales Service: 9/10
Cost of Ownership: 8.5/10
Overall: 8/10

Ford
The Blue Oval comes fourth in the survey, with consistent likeability among owners, across parameters. However, its brand image rating falls as most buyers indicate a lack of exciting cars. The EcoSport came across as the best-rated Ford model and buyers liked it for its manoeuvrability, seat comfort and infotainment system. Resale value is, however, perceived to be a major drawback for these vehicles. Buyers felt that Ford did a decent job with the sales experience and vehicle delivery but said that the dealership facilities could improve.

Brand: 6.5/10
Product: 7.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 8.5/10
Aftersales Service: 8/10
Cost of Ownership: 8/10
Overall: 7.5/10

Maruti Suzuki

India’s biggest carmaker achieves middle-of-the-pack ranking. Its traditional strengths like low cost of ownership and high resale value record strong performance. However, brand and product pull the company down. There is a wide variance in model-level performance for the brand. The WagonR, Swift and Dzire find greater likeability among women owners compared to the Alto, Baleno and Brezza. They also seem to show preference for other brands within a segment.

Brand: 7/10
Product: 7/10
Sales & Delivery: 8.5/10
Aftersales Service: 8.5/10
Cost of Ownership: 8.5/10
Overall: 7.5/10

Renault
The French brand is co-ranked fifth, alongside Maruti, in this survey. While dealer measures is where Renault does well in managing women car buyers, brand and product lowers their overall standing. There is a perception that the brand’s cars aren’t very exciting and that spares are expensive. At the model level, the Kwid does marginally better than the Duster. While ratings on product and brand for these models are similar, the Kwid scores better on cost of ownership and dealer measures. Respondents were impressed with the overall sales experience, especially with the knowledge of the sales personnel and with the vehicle delivery.

Brand: 7/10
Product: 6.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 8.5/10
Aftersales Service: 
8.5/10
Cost of Ownership:8/10
Overall: 7.5/10

Hyundai
It neither excels nor does poorly on any of the parameters. Sales and delivery is an area which records strong ratings. Buyers also responded positively to the styling and interior quality of its cars. However, there is a wide variance in model-level performance. Where the i20, Eon and Creta perform quite well across measures, the i10 Grand pulls Hyundai’s overall standing lower. Cost of servicing and spare parts is on the higher side and is an area of concern.

Brand: 7/10
Product: 7/10
Sales & Delivery: 8.5/10
AfterSales Service: 7.5/10
Cost of Ownership: 7.5/10
Overall: 7.5/10

Toyota
Toyota’s performance is a mixed bag. The Japanese carmaker records industry-best ratings on sales and vehicle delivery. Most women buyers felt that they received a good deal with their vehicles which were delivered on time and free of any defect. Toyota’s products though seem to fail in exciting women owners and many feel that the brand lacks visually appealing and innovative cars. While the Etios recorded the best ratings among entry mid-size cars, other models of Toyota didn’t do as well. The brand’s aftersales experience is largely fine. However, there is a perception of high cost of repairs and spares.

Brand: 6.5/10
Product: 7.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 9/10
Aftersales Service: 8/10
Cost of Ownership: 7/10
Overall: 7.5/10

Mahindra
Mahindra’s ranking is lowered due to brand, product and cost of ownership aspects. In the survey, many women buyers feel that the brand lacks visual appeal and innovative products. Though none of its models excel, the KUV100 and TUV300 perform marginally better. Resale value for Mahindra products too is seen as a negative. Buyers, however, acknowledge the large boot space, seat comfort and ground clearance offered by the Indian SUV maker. Dealer experience too is rated slightly higher, and so is aftersales experience.

Brand: 5.5/10
Product: 6.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 7.5/10
Aftersales Service: 7.5/10
Cost of Ownership: 7/10
Overall: 6.5/10

Tata Motors
Tata Motors records mediocre performance across all measures, with product being the main weakness. Barring the Tiago, which does relatively better, most of Tata’s models fail to provide an impressive experience to their women owners. Ease of getting in and out of the vehicle, smoothness of driving, and legroom are listed as areas of weakness. Visual appeal hasn’t been a strength, but this has been changing since the Tiago’s launch. Tata Motors’ low cost of maintenance also shone through in the survey.

Brand: 6/10
Product: 5.5/10
Sales & Delivery: 7.5/10
Aftersales Service: 7/10
Cost of Ownership: 7/10
Overall: 6.5/10

Also read: Indian women car buyers surveyed part 1

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