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Honda top U.S automaker in latest quality survey

Honda’s vehicles landed top rankings in seven model segments while its Ohio plants took third, fourth and fifth regional honors in the latest J.D. Power and Associates ratings released today.

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On a worldwide scale, J.D. Power said Honda Manufacturing of Indiana LLC, a plant nurtured by Ohio associates, tied for first among all automotive production plants.

“These results for our plant as well as for our products are very impressive,” Honda spokesman Ron Lietzke said. “This is Honda’s best showing ever.”

The honors make Honda the top automotive brand among all U.S. automakers, up from third last year.

The Honda name plate placed second overall, up from sixth a year ago. Acura was third, down a spot from 2010’s second place ranking.

Mr. Lietzke noted luxury brands take top honors, so Honda’s ascension to second overall speaks volumes about the company’s efforts to build quality vehicles.

“We’ve been working for many years to understand what the customer expects in terms of quality,” he said. “It is truly a full team effort.”

Honda’s philosophy of building vehicles in the intended markets helps sales communicate quickly any issues that arise with products, Mr. Lietzke noted.

Also, the automaker has positioned research and development facilities in the U.S. This enables designers and engineers to work closely with the manufacturing plants as new models are introduced, he said.

Finally, Honda’s delivery and dealer preparation system complete the chain by making sure the vehicles are in good condition and ready for the customers.

Seven Honda models took first place ratings, including the Element, which has ended production, and the Crosstour. Both are products of the East Liberty Auto Plant, which landed J.D. Power’s Bronze Award for auto plants in North and South Americas.

Marysville Auto Plant’s two lines were rated separately, taking fourth and fifth among plants.

Four Honda models took second place in the Initial Quality Study results.

Since 1968, J.D. Power has been conducting quality and customer satisfaction research based on survey responses from millions of consumers worldwide. The company says it represents the voice of the customer by translating survey responses from consumers and businesses into studies and reports that companies worldwide use to improve.

J.D. Power has developed and maintains one of the largest, most comprehensive historical customer satisfaction databases in existence, which includes feedback on the shopping, buying, and ownership experiences for a variety of products and services.

For more on the results, check for updates on www.examiner.org.

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