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KBB Study Shows Hyundai Leads in Loyalty

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author photo by Jeffrey Archer July 2011

Hyundai is the brand of choice for the auto industry's most loyal customers. According to a study from Kelley Blue Book tracking second-quarter data, the automaker has taken the reins from traditional loyalty champions Honda and Toyota, marking the first time Hyundai held the top spot in loyalty for an entire quarter.

At just over 52 percent, Hyundai's second-quarter brand loyalty led the industry, edging out Honda, which finished the quarter in second place at just under 50 percent. Coming in third was Toyota at around 48 percent, followed by Ford and Subaru with around 45 percent each.

Hyundai's rise in buyer loyalty comes as a surprise since most automotive brands have experienced a drop in loyalty over the last year. According to Kelley Blue Book, several recent factors have caused more buyers to begin shopping the competition, from the economic downturn to increased consumer knowledge of fuel economy, safety recalls and available vehicles. Nevertheless, Hyundai has prevailed in keeping its customers - likely due to widespread innovative, attractive new products like its recently redesigned Elantra and Sonata sedans.

"Hyundai's product renaissance is benefitting the company not just by attracting an all-new customer base, but by helping them retain current loyal Hyundai owners, as well," said Arthur Henry, Kelley Blue Book's market intelligence manager. "This latest brand loyalty analysis from kbb.com is a testament to the power of attractive vehicle designs and intriguing marketing in the minds of in-market car shoppers as they consider their next vehicle."

While Hyundai is reaching new heights among traditional automakers, luxury brands aren't faring quite so well. Loyalty scores were up for Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz in the second-quarter, but remain down year-over-year. According to Kelley Blue Book, many buyers remain cautious about returning to pricey, high-end vehicles before the economy makes a full recovery.

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KBB Study Shows Hyundai Leads in Loyalty - Autotrader