A new analysis from Poly reveals that Porsche, Cadillac, and Mazda enjoyed the greatest increase in owner loyalty this year. Polk measured owner loyalty among auto brands with, "at least 1,000 customers returning to market."
The three brands had the greatest percentage-point increases in owner loyalty between the first quarter of 2012 and 2013, according to Polk's data. Porsche saw its loyalty rate climb from 32.6 percent to 42.1 percent, up 9.5 percentage points, fueled primarily by Cayenne SUV sales. The Cadillac CTS helped push the luxury brand's retention rate from 39.1 percent to 47.4 percent, up 8.3 points, while the Mazda 3 helped the company grow its loyalty rate from 29.2 percent to 37.0 percent, a gain of 7.8 points.
Overall, customers are growing more loyal to their automotive brands. The average industry loyalty increase was 2.6 percentage points between the first quarters of 2012 and 2013. However, 13 of the brands Polk analyzed exceeded that figure.
"Automakers take customer loyalty seriously," Polk Loyalty Management vice president Lonnie Miller said in a statement. "There's something to be said for paying positive attention to the majority of your customer base while treating buyers professionally."
Although Porsche, Cadillac, and Mazda made the strongest leaps, they were not the brands with the greatest level of owner loyalty. That prestige fell to Ford, which saw 65.1 percent of its buyers return to buy a new car. Toyota was in second place, with an owner loyalty rate of 58.5 percent, while Honda took third with a 57.0-percent return rate. Chevrolet came next in brand loyalty, at 56.2 percent, while Mercedes-Benz and Nissan tied with an owner loyalty rate of 55.9 percent.
Polk previously revealed that owner loyalty is highly correlated to vehicle type: 35 percent of hybrid all owners don't buy another hybrid, for instance, although 60 percent of Toyota hybrid owners stick with the Japanese company.