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Re: Audi Price Cuts => Jap. v. Germ. cars . . .
> But aren't you comparing a *new* Japanese car to an *old* Audi. All
> cars improved in reliability dramatically during the '80s; in fact, JD
> Power notes that the average number of defects per new car was 6 in
> 1980 and is now 1.22. So you have to compare year by year, because
> statistically even the worst car now is 300% better than the average
> was in 1980.
A couple of days ago when I opened this "can 'o worms" I probably, by
accident, implied this comparison. *All* car manufactures have had to
improve the quality and reliability in order to survive. However, my
point was that I don't think that the folks at Audi America have shaken
off the so-so quality/reliability image of the late early/mid-1980's.
Whereas the Japanese luxo makers began with strong quality/reliability image
(withness the Lexus story). Some have argued that the average consumer
doesn't care about many of the innovative engineering features of the
Audi line. I agree, even though I'm drawn to Audi for this reason.
Since almost all manufactures are now using the quality story in their
communications it is no longer a distinctive message. So, Audi must
prove their products are of high quality/reliability through other means.
(Such as JD Powers & ?). I don't see a lot of evidence that this is
It is also interesting to note that, and correct me if I have this wrong,
Audi has a strong safety record in Europe (low death per crash rate) an
yet this is not widely know in the USA. This seems like a natural
strength to play on. A clever marcom pro ought to be able to
figure out a way to put a positive spin on this but I yet to see it in
print or on the TV nit . . .