National Automobile Dealers’ Association

NADA Dealer Satisfaction Index shows improvement in relationship between dealers, manufacturers and importers in the motor industry

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Johannesburg, 8 August 2022: The National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA) Dealer Satisfaction Index Survey (DSI) results were released on Thursday night (4 August) at an event at the WesBank Campus in Fairland, Johannesburg. The event was attended by captains of industry, dealers and special guests.

A total of 35 independently researched brands formed part of the survey. A total of 1 513 completed responses were received, 1 334 of which were received from Passenger and Light Commercial Vehicles (LCV) dealerships and 179 from Commercial Vehicle dealerships. The response rate for Passenger and LCV dealerships was 91% and 80% for Commercial Vehicle dealerships, making the NADA DSI 2022 survey one of the most well represented surveys globally. 

The NADA DSI survey, now in its 26th year, is carried out annually to monitor the health of the relationship between dealers and their respective manufacturers. It provides the dealer body with a platform to provide manufacturers and importers with robust feedback. Over the years, the outcomes of the survey have been used by dealer councils and manufacturers as an effective management tool to address areas of concern and improve service delivery throughout the entire value chain to the ultimate benefit of consumers. While the Covid-19 pandemic forced us to abandon the survey in 2020, we were extremely happy that we were able to complete the research again this year.”.

says Mark Dommisse, Chairperson of NADA

The NADA DSI project has been robustly supported by NADA Executive Members, NADA Dealer Council Chairmen and representatives of all 35 participating brands. This year, Lightstone, the company responsible for conducting the research since the introduction of this project in 1996, observed a significant increase in the manner in which the manufacturers and importers utilise the insight provided by the NADA DSI results.

To encourage the use of the NADA DSI results, Lightstone has included various in-depth analysis, including problem area analysis, density plots and regression analysis as part of the report. Now in its 26th year, the results are eagerly anticipated by the industry and the results are brought into sharp focus during a gala award ceremony hosted annually.”

said Jaco van Staden, Lightstone Head of Sales & Marketing

The NADA DSI survey was suspended in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic but resumed in 2021. The overall DSI score increased by 0.1% in 2022 to 76.1% and is the second highest score recorded since 2003 despite all the challenges currently facing the automotive industry.

The survey is divided up into a number of key focus areas of interest to the NADA membership. including Dealer Satisfaction; Communication & Relationships; Dealer Target Setting; Used Cars; CSI Program; Vehicle Range; Media Support; Vehicle Distribution; Parts; Goodwill, Policy Claims & Warranty; Franchise Compliance Audits; Dealer Support Labour Rates and Covid-19 Support.

Dealers surveyed in the Passenger and Light Commercial Vehicles (LCV) sector indicate that dealers are most satisfied with the Goodwill, Policy Claims & Warranty category, closely followed by Media Support, with both categories scoring above 86%. Eight categories improved since 2021, while four categories recorded the same scores as in the previous year. Vehicle Distribution is an area where dealers are most concerned.

“This is indicative of the current global macro-economic challenges experienced, for example the ongoing shortage of semiconductor chips, the KZN floods and the difficulties brought along by the Ukrainian war.” 

says Van Staden

Passenger and LCV Results

The most improved overall brand in 2022 is Honda (+8.6%). Other brands that showcased significant positive increase in overall satisfaction is Audi (+5.3%), followed by Lexus (+5.1%) and Toyota (+3.1%).

Hyundai, Toyota and Lexus achieved Platinum Status in 2022, while nine Manufacturers achieved gold status. The Gold award winners are Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, Mini, Kia, Renault, Volvo, BMW and newcomers Chery. Five brands achieved silver status in 2022 and four brands achieved bronze status.

Summary of results:

Passenger/ LCV 
AwardManufacturer or Importer
Most ImprovedHonda
PlatinumHyundai, Toyota and Lexus
GoldMercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, Mini, Kia, Renault, Volvo, BMW and newcomers Chery 
SilverAudi, Ford, Isuzu, Mazda, VW
BronzeFCA, Honda, Mahindra, Nissan

Commercial Vehicle results

The Commercial survey was first introduced in 2008. Since then, the highest overall average score of 78% was recorded in 2018. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2020 survey was suspended and resumed in 2021. The 2022 overall Commercial score has improved from 75.4 in 2021 to 77.2 in 2022, the second highest score achieved since inception of this study.

In 2017 the Platinum tier was introduced as part of the NADA DSI criteria for award for brands achieving above 85% in overall satisfaction.

The most improved brand in the 2022 NADA DSI is Tata Commercial, moving from an overall percentage of 56.2% in 2021 to 69.9% in 2022, only just missing out on a silver award.

Hino is again the only Commercial brand winning a Platinum award in 2022 with MAN, Mercedes-Benz Trucks and FUSO being awarded Gold. Three brands achieved silver status and only one brand was awarded bronze status. 

Commercial Vehicles 
AwardManufacturer or Importer
Most ImprovedTATA Commercial
GoldMAN, Mercedes-Benz Trucks and FUSO
SilverFAW, Isuzu Trucks, and UD Trucks
BronzeTATA Commercial

“Our warm congratulations go to all the Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze award winners and we hope to see more manufacturers moving to the Gold and Platinum award categories during the next round of evaluations in 2023.

“It is encouraging to see that, over the past 26 years, the NADA dealer survey has become a reliable and respected tool to identify any potential issues affecting the working relationship between retailers and respective manufacturers. We extend our sincere appreciation to all who have taken the time to participate in this annual initiative.” 

concludes Dommisse

Platinum Award – Commercial Vehicles:

From left to right: Alex Boavida, Vice Chairperson, NADA, Nico Hamman, Senior Manager – Sales and Dealer Network, Hino South Africa, Ernie Trautmann, Vice President, Hino South Africa and Mark Dommisse, National Chairperson, NADA 

Platinum Award – Passenger and Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs)

From left to right: Alex Boavida, Vice Chairperson, NADA, Stanley Anderson, Sales and Operations Director Hyundai Automotive South Africa and Mark Dommisse, National Chairperson, NADA 

Platinum Award – Passenger and Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs)

From left to right:  Alex Boavida, Vice Chairperson, NADA, Hennie Hugo, Senior Manager – Lexus, Glenn Crompton Vice President – Marketing, Toyota South Africa Motors and Mark Dommisse, National Chairperson, NADA 

Platinum Award – Passenger and Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs)

From left to right: Alex Boavida, Vice Chairperson, NADA, Anton Falck, General Manager – Sales, Dealer Network, and TALA (Toyota South Africa Motor’s Corporate Training Division), Ernie Trautmann, Vice-President – Sales and Dealer Network, Toyota South Africa Motors, and Mark Dommisse, National Chairperson, NADA