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 |  Mar 28 2011, 3:47 PM

The latest Harris poll results are out and Ford has taken the top spot in the “Full line automotive” sector, while Mercedes-Benz takes the win in the “Luxury” sector. The winners scored the highest in terms of customer connection, commitment, equity and trust.

Ford beat out rivals such as Chevrolet and Honda, while previous category winner Toyota had slipped to the number four spot.

On the luxury front, Mercedes-Benz beat out Lexus, which previously held the top spot but now is in second place. BMW took third spot.

A total of 25,099 random people, aged 15 and up participated in this survey, and were asked about 60 brands. Each brand was given a total of 1000 responses and the ranking was based on a calculation of familiarity, quality and purchase consideration.

You can read the full press release after the jump.

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 |  Oct 27 2010, 7:42 PM

In the old days, fierce brand loyalty was a given when it came to car sales and it was often handed down through generations – i.e. your grandfather drove a GM product, your dad drove a GM product and so did you.

Not any more. According to a recent survey by Morpace, these days, when it comes to shopping for vehicles it’s all about the deal. Out of 1,000 people surveyed, approximately 74 percent said they’d choose a vehicle based on price and incentives. Not only that but research shows they’re often willing to travel to get the best deal on a car or truck, so even much talked about elements such as customer service and dealer location don’t appear to be hugely important.

In fact, the survey illustrated that although many vehicle purchases might begin with referrals from family and friends, along with prior experiences and dealer marketing programs, when it comes to the actual purchase consumers “are willing to travel for a good deal on the product they really want, ” according to Morpace Vice President Karen Gaule.

As a result, when GM and Chrysler terminated more than 2,000 dealerships last year, there was little mourning, at least from consumers.

“The fact is, the American consumer buys products that are convenient, predictable and affordable. It’s the same for cars. The most important factors for a car buyer are overall price and monthly payment,” said Ed Tonkin chairman of the National Automobile Dealer’s Association at a conference in Detroit last week.

And with that kind of statement coming from the horse’s mouth, one question we have to ask ourselves now is, when will Walmart start selling cars?

[Source: Automotive News]