Lincoln hasn’t had the best luck in J.D. Power studies for 2020, first ranking below the industry average in the Initial Quality Study, followed by another disappointing finish in Automotive Brand Loyalty Rankings. But this week, Lincoln appears to be redeeming itself somewhat with a second place finish in J.D. Power’s 2020 APEAL Study, as well as a segment win for the 2020 Lincoln Navigator.
The Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) study is used to measure the “joy” a vehicle brings its owners, particularly to the point where it overshadows any potential problems they might experience with those vehicles. This is an unique phenomenon that in turn drives sales and generates brand loyalty and advocacy.
J.D. Power has updated the 2020 APEAL Study in this, its 25th year. It is designed to complement the Initial Quality Study and the Power Tech Experience Index Study by measuring owners’ emotional attachment and the level of excitement their new vehicle provides across 37 attributes.
Those qualities range from the sense of comfort and luxury they feel when climbing into the driver’s seat to the feeling they get when they step on the gas pedal. These attributes are then used to compute an overall APEAL index score, which is measured on a 1,000 point scale.
The latest version of this study is based on the responses acquired from 87,282 owners of new 2020 model-year vehicles, who were surveyed after 90 days of ownership. The study was conducted from February through May, 2020.
Once all the scores were calculated, the Navigator came out on top in the Large Premium SUV category, beating out its cross-town rival, the Cadillac Escalade, as well as the Mercedes-Benz GLS. Additionally, the Lincoln Corsair came in second place in the Compact Premium SUV segment, the Lincoln Nautilus finished third in the Mid-Size Premium SUV lineup, and the discontinued Lincoln MKZ secured third place in the Mid-Size Premium Car segment.
It’s a promising finish for Lincoln overall, and a sign that the brand is doing a good job of establishing an emotional bond with its owners.