The GMC brand performed well in the recent 2021 J.D. Power Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) study, which uses survey data to try and measure owners’ emotional attachment and level of excitement with their new vehicle.
Survey data for this study is the same as the data used in the 2021 U.S. Initial Quality Study, which is based on the responses from 110,827 purchasers and lessees of new 2021 model-year vehicles after 90 days of ownership. While the IQS attempts to gauge the initial quality of a new vehicle, this study attempts to gauge an owner’s personal feelings about their new vehicle. The APEAL study asks owners to consider and score 37 different attributes of their vehicle, including comfort, driving engagement/excitement and technology. J.D. Power then uses survey responses to award brands an APEAL score based on a 1,000-point scale.
GMC was ranked fourth among mass-market brands in the study with a score of 861. Dodge and Ram were first and second with scores of 882 and 881, respectively, while Nissan was third with a score of 866. The GMC Sierra HD was also the top-rated vehicle in the Large Heavy Duty Pickup segment, outclassing the Ram 2500/3500 and Ford F-Series Super Duty.
David Amodeo, director of global automotive at J.D. Power, says brands that introduced new vehicles this year had an advantage in the study. These products offer the latest technologies and equipment, which help to inspire excitement and pride in owners.
“The APEAL Study measures owners’ emotional attachment to their new vehicle, and the product launches that took place this model year have done a really good job,” he said. “Some are all-new and some are redesigns, but the new launches demonstrate that automakers are getting even better at hitting buyers’ emotional triggers.”
GMC could be in a good place to increase its overall brand appeal in next year’s edition of the study, with the automaker preparing to launch the hugely anticipated 2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup this fall. The GMC Hummer EV First Edition will arrive with a 1,000-horsepower battery-electric powertrain, sophisticated air suspension system and crisp, high-definition interior display screens running the video game-derived Unreal Engine. This is exactly the kind of equipment that inspires excitement in new vehicle owners and helps to reinforce their purchase decision.