The Blue Oval brand is at it again. The impressive Ford lineup has once more earned industry-leading results in third-party quality testing, as the company had more segment winners in the 2010 J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Performance, Execution And Layout (APEAL) Survey than any other automaker.
The annual study is based on input from more than 76,000 new-vehicle purchasers, who evaluated their rides in more than 80 different measures after 90 days of ownership.
Ford’s fab five included the Fusion, which was the best-rated entry in the Midsize Sedan category, beating out rivals like the Hyundai Sonata, Chevrolet Malibu and even the Buick LaCrosse. The Fusion moved up four spots compared to its place in the 2009 study, showing that it remains a powerful force in this very competitive segment.
The all-new Ford Taurus claimed top honors among Large Cars, and has now become one of the top 20 most “APEAL-ing” vehicles in the entire study. Also notable: The Taurus is one of only two vehicles to win its segment in both the APEAL rankings and the 2010 J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study, which measures consumer-reported problems with new vehicles after the first three months of the ownership experience.
In another hotly contested segment of the industry, the Ford Flex beat out rivals from Honda and Buick to achieve the highest score in the Midsize Crossover/SUV category. It’s the second consecutive year the Flex has bested its competition in the APEAL study.
The Ford Explorer Sport Trac, which earned top ratings from customers in both 2001 and 2002, proved it still offers plenty of what buyers want today—like a strong combination of value and versatility—by claiming the prize in this year’s Midsize Pickup category.
Finally, the rugged and roomy Ford Expedition was the big winner in the Large Crossover/SUV segment, moving up four places over its 2009 APEAL ranking.
“It’s a significant accomplishment to do so well in APEAL on the heels of receiving high marks from J.D. Power on initial quality,” said Bennie Fowler, Ford’s group vice president for Global Quality and New Model Launches. “The APEAL results stand as another proof point that Ford is redefining quality. We know it’s not enough to build defect-free cars and trucks. We move to the next step by delivering an experience that exceeds our customers’ expectations with features they would expect to find only in high-priced luxury lines.”
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