Kia is back and stronger than ever with an impressive year in J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Study (IQS). Recently, a historic milestone was reached when J.D. Power recognized Kia as highest ranked among non-luxury brands and the second-highest scoring nameplate industry-wide. Kia’s IQS score improved by 20 points since 2014 moving up four spots to second, behind Porsche and ahead of Jaguar, making it the second-highest tally among 33 automotive brands!
In this year’s Initial Quality Study (IQS), the Soul once again made its way back to the top of the “Compact Multi-Purpose Vehicle” segment while the Sorento claimed its title as the “Top Midsize SUV.” Additionally, the Rio, Optima, Cadenza, Sportage and Sedona also ranked in the top three of their respective segments!
One of the most crucial forms of research within the automotive industry is based on the measurement of product performance and reviews. From calculating safety ratings to horsepower, vehicle features, fuel economy and cargo capacity, prospective buyers are given an idea of just how much a vehicle has to offer. Information services like J.D. Power and Associates specialize in capturing, measuring and analyzing the sentiments of millions of consumers who already own the product of mention. By capturing these insights, their goal is to represent the voice of the customer to ultimately drive improvement in a wide range of products and services. In the end, these third party groups will empirically recognize the brands that stand out as the top performers in their categories.
Among the variety of metrics analysed by J.D. Power, the most prestigious report is the Initial Quality Study (IQS). This study examines owner-reported problems occurring within the first 90 days of owning a new vehicle such as breakdowns, malfunctions or user friendliness of the vehicle features. Once compiled, a score is allotted to every competing vehicle. In the 2015 study, a total of 244 vehicle models were ranked based on the responses of over 84,000 U.S. new-vehicle owners!
Throughout time, Kia has steadily climbed J.D. Power’s annual IQS rankings. After the Soul was ranked number one in the “Compact Multi-Purpose Vehicle” segment in 2012, Kia made the list of “Top 10” in 2013, with the Soul and Sportage taking top honours in their respective segments. In 2014, Kia jumped all the way to sixth place in the industry, with top honours going to the impressive Cadenza and a back-to-back win for the Sportage.
It is a truly special time to be a Kia owner and prospective buyer as the 2015 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study leaves no doubt that the brand is building quality world-class vehicles. Thanks to the voice of its customers, Kia has been able to consistently improve its score in the IQS study to further strengthen the “Power to Surprise” and delight customers everywhere. With an obsessive focus on quality and a ‘zero-defect’ mindset, no one should be surprised to see Kia and its innovative lineup at the top of the list in the years ahead!