Electric car owners reveal a surprising number of favs – not Tesla, Ford, GM or VW

Perhaps the biggest news is that Tesla did it not won top honors for the experience of owning an electric vehicle in the JD Power 2023 America’s Electric Vehicle Ownership Experience Study released Tuesday.

Instead, new models from the upscale Rivian and BMW-owned Mini Cooper stole the show.

Meanwhile, General Motors and Volkswagen failed to mention them in the top tier.

Even a top executive at JD Power said he was surprised by the results.

JD Power, the leading consumer electronics company that has informed the data processing industry for half a century, has announced the Rivian R1T pickup truck as a whole between electric vehicles and premium models for driving and interior styling. and foreign – the Mini Cooper Electric. the highest position in the market capitalization.

In its first year of eligibility, the Rivian R1T earned a satisfaction score of 794 (on a 1,000-point scale). Owners noted their satisfaction with the ride and the interior and exterior styling.

The Mini Cooper Electric, which starts at around $34,000, earned the highest satisfaction score of any EV model in the survey’s highest weighting scales, efficiency and safety.

After the numbers

The change in the inspection system now focuses on the first year of ownership and obtains the following points: the accuracy of the number of batteries disclosed; availability of public charging stations; battery range; cost of ownership; driving pleasure; ease of charging at home; interior and exterior styling; safety and technical features; service experience, vehicle quality and safety.

The JD Electric survey is conducted in partnership with PlugShare, a leading EV driver application and research company.

Brent Gruber, senior director of EV operations at JD Power, told the Detroit Free Press that he found it particularly interesting that one of the award recipients, the Mini Cooper Electric, offers a low battery range — about 114 miles — but the owners agreed. look away because they really like the style, the feel of the ride and the quality of the vehicle.

“The situation, as lacking as it can be, is weakened by the overall driving experience – the places that create joy or create a great emotion,” Gruber said.

The Ford Mustang Mach-E scores high marks for style and dynamics, too, he said.

Whose idea is this?

The survey, which was conducted from August 2022 to December 2022, included 7,073 owners of 2022-23 battery electric vehicles (BEV) and plug-in electric vehicles (PHEV). This is the third consecutive year of the survey. The Kia Nero EV compact car has been at the top of the mass market segment for the first two years. And Tesla has been the largest in the market for the first two years, with the Model S car and the Model Y SUV.

Why no Bolt or F-150 Lightning?

Seeing new models coming out and developing established electric vehicles shows how quickly the market is changing with new EV buyers, Gruber told the Free Press. “In years past, most were early adopters, people who owned EVs before and are buying again. Now there are more options for consumers.”

The Chevy Bolt and Bolt EUV (electric utility vehicle), which offer a cost-effective ownership experience, haven’t gained as much traction in this emerging market as other newer models have, Gruber said. And too few people have owned a Cadillac Lyriq so far to make much of an impact on the research. However, GM has a lot of interesting products coming up and they will be one to watch, he said.

Also, while the Rivian and F-150 Lightning are both crossovers, the Lightning falls into the mass market segment. In the latest study, its score was below average “and just not as good as other brands in the segment for some aspects of the ownership experience,” Gruber said.

“The biggest thing in the study, the biggest surprise, is the change,” Gruber said. “Manufacturers have been preparing these products for launch and now they’re here. The variety and convenience is overwhelming for consumers. While the adoption rate has been high on the West Coast, I’m amazed at how It’s all growing fast in places like the South.”

How great cars rank below average

  • Rivian R1T (794)
  • Tesla Model 3 (759)
  • Tesla Model Y SUV (754)
  • Audi e-tron SUV (735)
  • Polestar 2 Mini Car (724)

The average score for electric trucks was 756 points.

How public market products rank

  • Mini Cooper Electric (782)
  • Kia EV6 SUV (762)
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E SUV (742)
  • Hyundai Ioniq 5 (738)
  • Volkswagen ID.4 (735)
  • Kia Niro EV (733)
  • F-150 Lightning (723)
  • Chevrolet Bolt EUV (716)
  • Chevrolet Bolt EV (711)
  • Nissan Leaf (698)

The average score for electric vehicles on the market was 730.

Findings include data corruption

  • Mass market car owners cite infotainment as the biggest category of problem.
  • Luxury car owners have complained about noise, noise and external issues.
  • The biggest gap in satisfaction between these expensive cars and the mass market is access to public charging, with Tesla customers influenced by its main charging method. Premium owners found their satisfaction with public charging at 589 while business owner satisfaction dropped to 341.
  • EV owners who used the towing feature had higher satisfaction ratings than those who did not. The satisfaction range was higher among owners who pulled than those who did not.
  • In the mass market segment, 68% of first-time owners said they bought the car expecting lower operating costs and higher taxes. Vehicle performance is the main reason for 75% of first-time owners.

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Contact Phoebe Wall Howard: 313-618-1034 or phoward@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @phoebesaid

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