The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

J.D. Power Study Says Vehicles Offering Factory-Installed Navigation Systems Increase

November 26, 2001

While penetration of navigation systems remains at less than 1 percent of the market, the number of cars, vans, and light-trucks models that offer factory-installed navigation systems grew from 26 to 45, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2001 Navigation Usage and Satisfaction Study(SM). The number of vehicles with factory-installed navigation systems rose to an estimated 175,000 in the 2001-model year.The study focuses on overall navigation system satisfaction based on performance and layout as well as system design and integration within the particular vehicle model.The navigation system equipped on the Lexus GS Sedan, supplied by Denso, ranks highest in overall customer satisfaction, followed in a tie by the Alpine system supplied on the Acura RL (top ranked in 2000) and Denso’s Lexus LX 470 navigation system.As some suppliers convert their CD-based systems to DVD, navigation system users are reacting positively to the changes. Each of the top 10-ranked vehicles in the study is equipped with a DVD-based system, which typically offers greater geographic coverage, more detailed points of interest information, and calculates routes faster.Although the number of consumers with previous exposure to navigation systems is increasing, most owners are selecting a vehicle equipped with a navigation system without any prior experience in using one. However, after leaving the dealership, many consumers are not sure how to operate their system, where to go to get their questions answered, how to upgrade their software or where to go for service if a problem occurs.More than one-half of new owners use their system at least once or twice a week. Finding residential/business addresses or routes to unfamiliar locations are the most common system uses. One in four navigation system owners surveyed has another directional support tool readily available – a personal assistant service (e.g., OnStar, Lexus Link). These consumers can get routing assistance from a trained personal advisor.
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