PremonAsia, an automotive-focused consulting firm has just released details of India’s first-ever women’s automotive buyer study (WABSSM). The study is a measure of women’s satisfaction with their vehicle choice through five key areas: brand image, product performance, sales and delivery, aftersales service and cost of ownership.
Honda, Volkswagen and Nissan owners emerged the most satisfied with their product choice. Whilst Honda is the overall winner, Volkswagen ranks highest on brand image, Nissan does well on aftersales service, and Toyota excels in sales and delivery.
For Honda, its City owners report a delightful experience on all aspects while the Honda Jazz did very well too. However, its other models fell short of the high expectations attached with the brand. While, placed overall second, Volkswagen recorded the industry best score on brand image. Barring products where the experience is slightly lower, VW performed consistently on other measures. For third place, Nissan’s Micra found a strong likeability but its other models were unable to attain similar scores.
Interestingly, the study also busted some stereotypical assumptions. For example, says Rajeev Lochan Founder & CEO of PremonAsia: “Men buying a car on behalf of a female family member or friend hold the belief that practical aspects like budget, cost of ownership, and fuel efficiency are key choice drivers for women. Contradicting this myth, the study reveals that women buyers are more discerning in attaching a significantly higher importance to brand and product elements.” To capture this, PremonAsia surveyed over 500 men who bought a car on behalf of a woman and contrasted the findings with those from the inputs of 2,587 women car owners and 763 intenders.
The study also threw up other interesting findings. For instance, despite cab services like Ola and Uber, women prefer personal transportation due to concerns about trust and safety. Visually appealing cars and innovative technology are important drivers of brand perception. VW, Honda and Hyundai emerge positively on these virtues. Interestingly, the study found that women in smaller cities start learning to drive and acquire a license sooner than women in metros.
The WABS study was conducted from April through July 2017, across 28 cities and towns in India and covered 11 popular brands and over 80 models.