The automotive industry is notoriously tough. Each manufacturer competes for not only sales, but also for rankings by organizations such as J.D. Powers, Car & Driver, and Edmund. Among the most popular ranking report on vehicles is the one done by independent testing organization, Consumer Reports.
To compile the report, the team at Consumer Reports test drives and evaluates multiple attributes of 270 different vehicles. To be a top tier pick, the cars must score well in road tests, crash tests, and have better predicted reliability.
The top brands this year, in order, are: Audi, Subaru, Lexus, Porsche and BMW (tied), Mazda, and Buick.
This year’s winners by category include:
- Compact car: Subaru Impreza
- Midsize car: Toyota Camry
- Large car: Chevrolet Impala
- Subcompact car: Honda Fit
- Sport car: Mazda MX-5 Miata
- Small SUV: Subaru Forester
- Midsize SUV: Kia Sorento
- Luxury SUV: Lexus RX
- Minivan: Toyota Sienna
- Pickup truck: Ford F-150Did your vehicle make the list?
Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Show Consumer Reports’ rankings: http://pressroom.consumerreports.org/pressroom/2016/02/consumer-reports-2016-annual-top-picks-kia-sorento-lexus-rx-are-best-suvs.html
- Show the video of car rankings: https://youtu.be/ihiJcQBvX74
- Discuss how companies can use the report in their marketing.
- What should companies that didn’t make the top list do to promote their vehicles?
- Review key aspects of developing a product positioning map, including determining the axis labels for positioning.
- Divide students into teams and have each team develop a positioning map for a category of automobiles.
Source: Consumer Reports, Manufacturing Business Technology