MAHWAH, N.J., July 25, 2012 – According to J.D. Power and Associates 2012 Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study released today, Jaguar ranks second industry wide among nameplates in vehicle appeal and the Range Rover Evoque is most appealing in the Entry Premium Crossover SUV segment. For the second year in a row, Jaguar ranks second out of 34 brands measured in the industry – with the Jaguar XJ scoring as second highest large premium car. Land Rover placed sixth (in a tie) among 34 brands, and the new Range Rover Evoque receives the award for Most Appealing Entry Premium Crossover SUV.
“The J.D. Power and Associates APEAL study simply indicates how much your customers like their vehicles’ design, performance and features, and clearly our customers are quite smitten,” says Andy Goss, President of Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC. “Jaguar Land Rover is dedicated, as a premium automotive company, to providing the customers of both our brands with quality vehicles that deliver extraordinary performance, innovative technology, and desirable styling.”
Jaguar is the second most improved nameplate. The gain is primarily driven by the Jaguar XJ with 901 points – one of only three models in the industry to score above 900. The Jaguar brand was also the most improved, and tied for 2nd highest in the industry, in the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 Initial Quality Study (IQS).
Land Rover placed sixth overall in the industry in a tie, showing that its lineup of luxury SUVs is well regarded by its customers. Leading the Land Rover lineup is the new Range Rover Evoque, which in its first year in the survey scored higher than all other Entry Premium Crossover SUVs. According to the survey, customers of the award-receiving Range Rover Evoque most appreciate its design and fuel economy, compared to its segment. The Range Rover Evoque combines class-leading performance with dynamic and agile handling across all terrains. This is the 102nd global award for the Range Rover Evoque.
The J.D. Power and Associates APEAL study examines how gratifying a new vehicle is to own and drive based on owner evaluations of more than 80 vehicle attributes. The study’s unique approach to measuring owner satisfaction and how much a customer likes or dislikes virtually every aspect of their new vehicle provides a powerful tool to manufacturers to influence future product development.
The 2012 APEAL study is based on responses gathered between February 2012 and May 2012 from more than 74,000 purchasers and lessees of new 2012 model-year cars and trucks who were surveyed after the first 90 days of ownership.
As demand for the Range Rover Evoque continues around the world, employees at JLR’s Halewood manufacturing plant are celebrating one year of production.
Twelve months ago, when the first vehicle rolled off the production line, the Evoque had already generated an exceptional market response with more than 18,000 advance orders from customers worldwide. This interest continues today with demand for the Evoque driving sales of almost 80,000 units in just nine months.
With more than 110 global awards under its belt, the Evoque has gained critical acclaim from customers and media alike. Crowned Top Gear Magazine Car of the Year, World Design Car of the Year and North American Truck of the Year amongst others, the Evoque continues to receive plaudits for its concept car looks, dynamic driving performance, class leading off-road skills and excellent cost of ownership.
This early success for Evoque has had a significant positive impact on the Halewood facility. In anticipation of the launch in 2011, the workforce was increased to more than 3,000 employees. In March this year, JLR announced it would recruit a further 1,000 employees to help deliver the increased volume of both Evoque and Land Rover Freelander 2, which is also manufactured at Halewood.
In just three years the workforce has trebled and the plant now employs more than 4,000 people.
Halewood Operations Director Richard Else, said: “The Evoque is an incredibly exciting vehicle that continues to turn heads. Sales of the Evoque remain strong across all markets and here at the plant we are working hard to meet this demand.”
The Evoque is designed, engineered and manufactured in the UK with more than 75 per cent of production exported to more than 170 global markets – generating an estimated £2 billion in annual export value for the UK.
The Range Rover Evoque and Land Rover Discovery 4 are continuing their winning ways in the 2012 Auto Express Awards, taking top honours respectively as Best Compact SUV and Best Large SUV.
For Evoque, which was the reigning Auto Express Car of the Year, it is a second successive victory in its class, demonstrating that the promise it showed in the build up to its launch last year has been fully realised. Its quality, performance and appeal have now been recognised by well in excess of 100 awards and excellent sales figures worldwide.
Evoque was challenged for honours in its class by its sister model, the Freelander 2, which earned a judges’ commendation, and the BMW X3.
Auto Express Editor-in-Chief, Steve Fowler said: “Last year’s Car of the Year is still the one to beat and easily keeps hold of its Best Compact SUV title.
“The Evoque is all about style, quality and driver appeal. It turns heads like little else, is built superbly and is great fun to drive – a truly brilliant all-rounder.”
Discovery 4 accomplishes a hat-trick this year, claiming the Best Large SUV award for the third year running, making it the pre-eminent model in its class every year since its launch.
The Auto Express success adds to an impressive array of honours for the model, demonstrating Discovery’s strength-in-depth as it progresses beyond the production milestone of 1,000,000 units; it has established its dominance in the class by winning the award eight consecutive times.
Fowler commented: “This is the third Auto Express award for Discovery 4, proof that it is one of the best cars in the real world. Nothing can touch its blend of go-anywhere ability, comfort, tremendous practicality and value. A continual programme of development keeps it ahead of the pack and keeps it looking cool, too.”
Discovery 4 took top spot in its category this year ahead of finalists the Porsche Cayenne and Hyundai Santa Fe. Land Rover’s across-the-board success this year was completed by the Range Rover being commended in the awards’ Luxury Car category.
Jeremy Hicks, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover UK, accepted the awards at a presentation at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London. He said: “These awards demonstrate the breadth of appeal that the Land Rover brand has in the UK. We have our strongest ever product line-up, and retail sales in the UK are up 28% YTD.
“The Discovery 4 is widely recognised as the world’s most versatile and capable SUV and the Range Rover Evoque is continuing to win awards that recognise its all-round performance, distinctive design, and class leading cost of ownership.”