JD Power Owner Satisfaction 2009 - Compact executives

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  • All categories covered
  • Over 15,000 owners surveyed
  • See how your car rates, here
There's barely any space between this year's runners-up, but the winner is leagues ahead of the rest. Only one compact executive matters if you're after satisfaction




1: Lexus IS

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 82.5%
Overall ranking: 4th
The IS gains another category win for Lexus and goes straight into the overall league table at number four. The most impressive aspect of running the IS, owners said, was the impeccable level of service offered by dealers.

Performance in every other area was also very good, although in each instance there was a small fly in the ointment. Quality and reliability scores were strong, for instance, but there were a few exterior problems, such as wind noise.

The appeal of the car was judged highly, even if a shortage of space and storage cast a slight shadow over the report card.

Finally, four out of five stars were awarded for ownership costs overall, but fuel consumption was considered below average.

2: Jaguar X-Type

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 80.7%
Overall ranking: 17th=
Owners awarded the highest marks for their X-type's solid build and dependable reliability, and the excellent service that they got from dealers.

Running costs were particularly favourable, particularly insurance premiums, while the amount of space and storage was a highlight in the cabin.

3=: BMW 3 Series

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 80.6%
Overall ranking: 20th=
Pipped at the post by the X-type, and tied with the Mercedes C-Class, the 3 Series put in a solid performance across the board, although problems with the heating and air-conditioning meant below average marks from owners.

As you might expect from a BMW, driving dynamics were rated very highly by 3 Series drivers.

3=: Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 80.6%
Overall ranking: 20th=
Mercedes has its dealers to thank for much of the success of the C-Class in this year's survey.

Owners were really pleased with the service they received at showrooms, and with the C-Class's running costs.

However, they did list problems with the engine, transmission, stereo, satellite-navigation system and the seats.

5: Audi A4

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 79%
Overall ranking: 51st=
Almost the complete reverse of the C-Class, Audi A4 owners were happy with the build and reliability of their cars, but said that the service from dealers left a lot to be desired.

Owners also marked the A4 down on driving dynamics and the interior, complaining about the seats, air-conditioning and stereo system.




6: Saab 9-3

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 78.7%
Overall ranking: 56th=
A poor driving experience, lacklustre engine and transmission and low marks for the interior drag the Saab to the bottom of its class.

Owners said the car was mostly reasonable besides, so the 9-3 just about earns an average overall rating.

How they rated:
Click the image, below, to view a larger version of how all the cars rated.







Name: Parminder Guraya Job: Electronics engineer Model: IS250 SE (Multimedia) Mileage: 12,000
'I'm glad I went for the petrol, because it suits the Lexus perfectly – it's silky smooth, very quiet and works well with the six-speed automatic gearbox. Handling is pretty good and it turns in keenly with very accurate steering. Build quality is great and the interior is exquisite apart from a few items, particularly the awful 1980s digital clock.'

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