JD Power Survey 2011 - Small family car winner

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  • Annual satisfaction survey
  • Owners surveyed about their cars
  • Results of almost 300 million miles driving
1 Skoda Octavia
Satisfaction rating: 83.1%
Overall: 11th
Skoda Octavia review


A return to the top spot for the Skoda Octavia, which scores a higher percentage than ever. A slip into second place in 2010 is now only a memory.

As always, the Skoda’s success is down to being strong in every area – only a few, mainly niggling, issues dented a performance that varied from generally above average to outstanding.

Mechanical problems were few and far between, and when they did occur it wasn’t in great numbers and they were confined to relatively minor, chiefly cabin-related, matters.

Owners lavishly praised their servicing experience, from booking-in to collecting the car. Rated best of all were the staff, who were judged to be helpful and courteous, and the service facilities were praised for being so clean. Fuel, insurance and repair costs also drew favourable comment.

The car’s practicality won a big cheer, especially the boot space and the ease with which the boot could be loaded and unloaded.

Story continues below…
Case study
Name: Giles Wynne
Age: 67
Lives: Lincoln
Job: Retired
Model: 1.4 TSI Elegance
Mileage with car: 1900

‘I do a lot of car boot sales and buy and sell furniture, so I wanted a car that I could tow with – and my Octavia has done me proud. It’s refined, big enough for four people, has an enormous boot and the engine is strong enough even when the trailer’s full. The car’s been economical, too, averaging 41mpg even with the extra trailer weight. For the money, it’s simply outstanding.’
The fact that all interior controls were easy to locate and were clearly marked also made the ownership experience fuss-free.

Don’t think the Octavia scored high marks only for doing the sensible things well, though.

The driving experience was generally rated highly, as owners were reassured by the car’s stability, smooth gearshift and responsive brakes and steering.

Those gripes? Some aspects of the drive were rated as only average. There were complaints about the rear wipers and washers, the front door locks, loud speakers, windows fogging up and the heaters being slow to warm the cabin.

Since those issues were the biggest problems reported, it’s little wonder the Skoda is top of the class once again.

Small family car league table
Click on the image below for a larger version of the results.

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JD Power Survey 2011 - Other small family cars - part 1

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