Automotive research and consulting firm AutoPacific, Inc. announced the 2019 Ideal Vehicle Awards (IVA), recognizing vehicles that best meet owners’ expectations for the product. The 2019 awards are based on responses from more than 50,000 owners of new vehicles across all major manufacturers. Based solely on owner input, AutoPacific IVAs measure the fusion between owner expectations and reality. “IVAs speak to a vehicle’s layout and design,” says AutoPacific president George Peterson. “Giving owners a chance to tell us what they would change and how they would change it reveals which vehicles are best designed to meet their needs and expectations.”
Volvo Top Premium Brand: Ram top Popular Brand
The all new Ram 1500 propels Ram to the top of the Popular Brand rankings and also top brand overall. Volvo, riding on excellent results for its crossover SUVs (XSUV) is top Premium Brand. The Volvo XC60 is the top ranked vehicle overall.
U.S. brands receive eight IVA vehicle wins, down from fourteen last year, plus the top popular brand. European brands receive three vehicle wins, down from eight in 2018. Volvo is the top brand overall the top premium brand. Asian brands receive thirteen wins, up from five in 2018.
Winners Distributed Among 11 Manufacturers
Nissan, Honda and FCA are tops with four category wins each. Ford, Volvo, Subaru, Hyundai and Tesla each have two wins. The remaining wins go to GM, BMW and Toyota. “While no single brand or manufacturer is taking all the glory, several brands have exceptional designs,” says Peterson. Nissan is strong in the mid-size car and large SUV segments; Honda took the economy/compact car segments; and Subaru swept the mid-size XSUV segments.
Trucks Outperform Cars
While there is still room for improvement, trucks (SUVs and pickups) outperform cars in most IVA attributes, notably visibility, technology, interior quietness and safety features. “SUVs continue to grow in popularity by giving consumers car-like fuel economy and better overall design, including technology and visibility. We will most certainly see continued growth in SUV sales, coupled with a decline in car sales,” says Peterson.
IVAs Reveal Industry Shortcomings
Consistent with past years, IVAs reveal that info/entertainment technology, interior quietness, power and acceleration, safety features and interior storage are the areas where consumers most likely to want to change. “Overall, the percentage of consumers who want better performance in these areas is about the same today as it was three years ago, and these represent major opportunities for automakers to improve,” says Peterson.
2019 Ideal Vehicle Award Summary
2019 Overall Winner: Volvo XC60
2019 Most Ideal Brand Overall and Most Ideal Popular Brand: Ram
2018 Most Ideal Premium Brand: Volvo
Luxury EV Car
Tesla Model 3
Aspirational Luxury Car
Luxury Mid-Size Car
Premium Compact Car
Popular EV Car
Full Size Pickup
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Executive Luxury Crossover SUV
Aspirational Luxury Crossover SUV
Premium Compact Crossover SUV
Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV
Mid-Size Crossover SUV
Compact Crossover SUV
Luxury EV Crossover SUV
Tesla Model X