Communications of the IIMA


Consumers use quality surveys to reduce risk in purchasing a car. The J. D. Power’s initial quality survey of automobile buyers reports the number of problems found in the first 90 days of ownership. It is important that this information be clear and concise for the public to understand. In 2006, the surveys were changed to combine two measures of quality, number of defects and design problems, into a single number. In prior years, only the number of defects was used. The survey design change combined with issues related to the methodology in aggregating values leads to confusion and inconsistencies over time as the difference between cars becomes insignificant. The conclusion recommends changes to correct these problems.