GM Generates the Most Customer Loyalty Among Automakers

American motorists are most attached to the Detroit-based manufacturer, according to an analysis based on state vehicle registrations.

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For a third consecutive year, General Motors retains its billing as the auto manufacturer with the most loyal customers.

The designation, based on an IHS Markit analysis of state vehicle registrations, considers what makes and models Americans purchase, and then what those vehicles are replaced with. 

With some 17.5 million new vehicle registrations during the 2017 model year, 53.6 percent of customers returned to the market to buy or lease another new vehicle from the same make they already owned, IHS found. The record loyalty rate is an increase of 0.8 percentage points from last year.

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The business information provider found GM garnered a loyalty rate of 69.1 percent. The Ford brand, which excludes Ford's Lincoln division, held a loyalty rate of 63.4 percent. 

"There are a few things General Motors does really well," Steve Had, vice president of sales and marketing product solutions at IHS, said in a phone interview. "When you think about their portfolio of brands and products, GM's is very broad, and it offers a wide choice to customers returning to market."

GM focuses on customer retention, communicating with its customers and engaging heavily with efforts by dealers, Had said.

Toyota leads in loyalty among three ethnic groups: African American, Hispanic and Asian. "This is the first time we've seen any single brand in each of the three major ethnic markets, so it's a sweep and the culmination of a lot of hard work over the years," said Had.