According to the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout (APEAL) Study, BMW makes some of the most appealing new vehicles on the market, and some of the most appealing vehicles within their individual segments. The study, which is complemented by the company’s Initial Quality (IQS) Tech Experience Index (TXI) studies, works by measuring owners’ emotional attachment to and their level of excitement for their new vehicle. In total, 37 attributes are considered, which range from the level of comfort one feels when entering the driver’s seat, to the rush a driver gets when stepping on the gas.
The responses are used by J.D. Power to compute an overall APEAL index score based on a 1,000-point scale. Responses were gathered from 110,827 owners of 2021 model-year vehicles after 90 days with their cars, from February through July of this year.
The BMW models found to be the most appealing may or may not surprise you. They include the BMW 4 Series, the BMW X4, X6, and X7. The BMW 4 Series is the most appealing compact premium car, and according to the study, BMW essentially owns the segment, as the 3 Series also ranked, alongside the Lexus IS sport sedan. The same is true of the compact premium SUV segment, where BMW also effectively dominates with the X4 as the highest ranked offering, in addition to the X3 (the most popular BMW model in the U.S. for a few years running), and the Porsche Macan. In the upper midsize premium SUV segment, the highest ranked model is the X6, while the most appealing vehicle in the large premium SUV segment is the X7, according to the study.
In terms of overall brand ranking, BMW came in fifth, with a score of 874 out of a possible total of 1,000. Porsche, rather unsurprisingly, came in first, with an index of 882, followed by Genesis and Land Rover at 879, and Lincoln at 876. Perpetual rival Mercedes-Benz ranked sixth with a score of 867, while others like Lexus, Jaguar, and Audi all had scores below the segment average of 864.
One segment in which BMW did not rank in terms of a model was, rather conspicuously, for premium sports cars. The most appealing premium sports car as per the study is the Chevrolet Corvette, followed by the Lexus LC, and the Porsche 911. Tesla was not included in the brand ranking or model results because, “Tesla doesn’t grant J.D. Power permission to survey its owners in fifteen states where it is required.”
The number of BMW models which received awards as part of the study, including the 4 Series, X4, X6, and X7, mean BMW has the most models in the premium segment, and the second-highest number of appealing models on the market in general, just behind General Motors, which has five spread across three of its brands including Cadillac, Chevrolet, and GMC.—Alex Tock
[Photos courtesy BMW AG.]