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Santro, Ikon, Qualis lead in quality

Mumbai, Dec. 23: If it’s quality you’re looking for, there’s no beating the Santro. Or the Ikon. Or even the Qualis. Hyundai’s Santro, Ford’s Ikon and Toyota’s Qualis lead the pack in their respective segments for initial quality, said the JD Power Asia Pacific 2002 India Initial Quality Study (IQS) released today.

JD Power, which conducts customer satisfaction research and provides consulting services in the automotive, information technology and finance industries sectors, said initial vehicle quality has improved for the fifth consecutive year.

The industry-wide average of 151 problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) in 2002 is 23 per cent lower than in 2001 and is one-third (36 per cent) of the figure just four years back.

More importantly, the study showed that the Santro, with a rating of 106 PP100, ranks highest in the premium compact segment, a 24 per cent improvement over 2001. The Maruti Alto (114PP100) and Maruti Wagon R (123PP100) follow the Santro, both with PP100 scores better than the segment average of 147.

The study said the Ford Ikon ranks highest in the entry mid-size segment as it did in 2001, achieving 126 PP100, followed by the Hyundai Accent and the Maruti Esteem.

In the multi utility vehicle (MUV) segment, the Toyota Qualis walked away with the top honours, improving seven points over last year to 185PP100. The Mahindra Bolero and the Tata Safari came second and third on the list in the segment.

JD Power said that in 2002, the models in the premium compact segment “drive the impressive rate of improvement in industry, with four models earning a score better than the industry average”.

The study was based on evaluation of more than 3,000 new vehicle owners of 29 different models, representing 13 makes. It measured vehicle quality in the first three to five months of ownership.

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