JD Power Owner Satisfaction 2009 - Family cars

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Our roads might be dominated by conventional cars but it's Toyota's petrol-electric Prius that gets the highest praise from owners – for the third year on the trot.

1: Toyota Prius

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 84.3%
Overall ranking: 2nd
It's three out of three victories for the Toyota Prius – it has come top in its segment every time it's appeared. Although it had to relinquish the lead in the overall model league table, the Toyota still finishes a highly creditable second.

Owners gave the Prius a perfect report card for ownership costs and reliability, with an unblemished record for Toyota's hybrid on fuel consumption, service and repair costs, insurance premiums and mechanical reliability, too.

Prius drivers said they weren't overjoyed with the look of their cars, or the noise the doors made as they closed, but scores here still weren't bad.

The seating could be a bit better and there could be more storage, but in general the Prius is putting a broad grin on owners' faces.

2: Volvo S40

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 82%
Overall ranking: 7th
An excellent result for the S40 saloon, with tip-top dealer service winning the Volvo the highest marks from owners.

The shortage of space and poor storage in the cabin were heavily criticised, but otherwise S40 drivers thought the look, feel and quality of the interior were excellent.

The exterior design also drew praise, along with good visibility and a strong roster of safety features.

3: Honda Accord

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 81.5%
Overall ranking: 9th
Accord drivers are very happy with the look and feel of their cars, although a little extra space and storage wouldn't go amiss, they said. Particular praise was heaped on the service from dealers.

Top marks were given for the air-con, but problems with the sat-nav and stereo dragged the Accord down a little.

4: Mazda 6

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 80.5%
Overall ranking: 22nd
Hardly any owners reported reliability problems with their cars. The air-conditioning created a few headaches, but even here the 6 was far from bad.

Dealer service was considered to be very good, but many 6 drivers were unhappy with their car's fuel economy.

5: Volvo V50

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 79.6%
Overall ranking: 35th
Volvo V50 drivers said they loved the look of their car and the cabin, although space and storage were problems. Dealer service was also said to be very good, and while fuel consumption was a niggle, the cost of insurance was a bigger issue.

6: Toyota Avensis

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 79.1%
Overall ranking: 47th
Dealer service saves the day for the Toyota Avensis. Although engine performance, space, visibility and the quality of the stereo were all given average marks, everything else was judged below average, from driving dynamics to the air-con and styling.

Some owners said they had problems with the stereo system and seats.

7: Volkswagen Passat

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 78.4%
Overall ranking: 58th
Quality and reliability were very good, owners said, with the notable exception of the engine and transmission.

Overall, the Passat moves up 20 places on last year's result because drivers were happier with the styling and controls, even if the stereo left a lot to be desired.

8: Ford Mondeo

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 78.2%
Overall ranking: 59th
Although Mondeo owners liked the space and seats, and gave the stereo and air-con only four-star ratings, many complained about things going wrong inside.

Fuel and servicing costs were thought to be adequate, along with the driving experience, but dealers were below par.

9: Peugeot 407

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 77.2%
Overall ranking: 67th
Owners had some positive things to say about the 407, with good marks for its cabin and design as well as for the robustness of the engine and transmission.

Niggles with the driving experience dropped the Peugeot down the rankings, along with issues over space and problems with the seats. It's running costs and dealers that are the 407's undoing.

10: Vauxhall Vectra

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 76.4%
Overall ranking: 78th
Although spacious, the large cabin didn't really strike many owners as an attractive or comfortable place to be. Ownership costs were said to be reasonable, but dealer service was pretty dismal.

11: Renault Laguna

Vehicle owner satisfaction score: 75.6%
Overall ranking: 88th
Living with a Laguna was most disappointing for owners in terms of the high running costs. Drivers also said they didn't like the cabin, exterior styling or the experience at the wheel.

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

Name: Oliver Hipkiss and Anita Wright Job: Teachers Model: T-Spirit Mileage: 10,000
'I changed to Toyota from Mercedes and have found the refinement a giant leap forwards — this car is so smooth and quiet. The exterior design is its weakest part, but inside its very smart. Economy? Well a tankful takes me 600 miles — the display reads 55mpg. In fact, half my journey to work uses hardly any petrol, which makes you feel good. Cheap to run, very refined and good to own.'

JD Power Owner Satisfaction 2009 - Compact executives


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