Product development specialist CAP Consulting has highlighted the need for aspiring premium carmakers to focus on ‘the ownership experience’.
The firm quotes a study by Bain & Company showing that a customer is four times more likely to defect to a competitor if the problem is service-related than price or product-related.
Rapid advances in engineering, materials and design have opened the door to potential luxury positioning, with manufacturers such as Volvo, Jaguar, Alfa Romeo and Infiniti all eyeing this space.
Matthew Freeman, of CAP Consulting, points to the success of Lexus in the United States as an example of achieving premium status from a standing start.
“Lexus understood back in 1989 that winning trust was the first priority and that dominating the customer satisfaction charts was key to achieving authentically premium status,” he said.
“If you want to tempt people out of £50,000, £75,000 or £110,000 BMWs and Audis, the customers have to be confident that this decision won’t come back to bite them.”