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Ford Loses Overall Loyalty Award To Tesla After 12 Year Run

Ford has long enjoyed having some of the most loyal customers in the automotive world, most of whom have come back to the brand time and time again over the years. In fact, The Blue Oval topped S&P Global Mobility’s Overall Loyalty to Make category in the Automotive Loyalty Awards for an impressive 12 consecutive years in 2022, as well as racking up 21 total wins since that specific category was created. Now that the 2023 version of S&P’s Automotive Loyalty Awards has been released, however, it marks the end of that impressive run for Ford.

2023 Ford Super Duty

Tesla managed to wrangle this honor away from Ford this year, a change that S&P at least partially attributes to supply chain shortages, as some customers were apparently enticed to switch brands with so few choices on dealer lots. Loyalty as a whole continues to drop, however, decreasing from 54.6 percent in 2019 to 50.2 percent in 2022.

The results of this year’s Automotive Loyalty Awards are based on an analysis of 11.7 million new retail vehicle registrations in the U.S. during the 2022 calendar year. Loyalty is determined when a household that owns a new vehicle returns to market and acquires another new vehicle of the same make, model, or manufacturer. The newly acquired vehicle may be either a replacement or an addition to the household fleet.

As a whole, this year’s study found that the automotive market faced its fair share of challenges as loyalty fell for the third straight year, while fewer customers returned to purchase a new vehicle as well. “The past three years have been a challenge for the automotive industry,” said Joe LaFeir, President, Automotive Insights, S&P Global Mobility. “As customers are returning back to market post-pandemic and inventory levels have slowly improved from last year’s lows, retaining loyal customers has been more challenging than ever before.”

We’ll have more insights like this to share soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for 24/7 Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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Comments

  1. David Dickinson II

    It would be interesting to know how many customers Ford lost because they can’t produce an adequate number of vehicles, and how many were lost due to Ford’s quality problems. Ford has a challenging couple of years ahead of it.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Agree all points.

      Reply
    2. Bob

      Add on to this the dealer markups and basically sticking it to the customer.

      Reply
  2. Mackie

    So why are Tesla customers replacing their vehicles already? Battery degradation? If not a replacement, who would own 2 small commuter EVs at $60K each? Tesla claims their vehicles will always be current with OTA updates and have no parts to ‘wear out’. They also lack a dealer service network. Will come to a head when the ‘millions’ of new and used Teslas shockingly start ‘wearing out’ long before the average ICE car (the average age of a vehicle in US is 12 years old).

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Because generally they are in a group with higher disposable income, this was aided by higher retained value (we saw this already decline a bit of and this will further decline with more competition.)

      As for Tesla service network, Farley indicated recently that he sees that Tesla is adding service points in Norway (so it is heading in the direction of traditional OEMs) and he expects them to eventually do this elsewhere as well (I think the takeaway is that with its current dealer footprint, Ford sees itself already well positioned for the future, with the announced adjustments to ordering, delivery & service specialization.)

      I’m not sure how you make the magical speculative jump to “millions of new and used Teslas start shockingly wearing out…before the avg ICE car”… when this isn’t borne out by more than a decade of experience.

      Reply
    2. Bob

      So why are Tesla customers replacing their vehicles already? Because the first customers
      have the money to do it.
      Battery degradation? No, there is even a million mile Tesla out there.
      Commuter EV? With 300 miles of range and quick charging? I am looking to buy one. They are not 60K they are 35K for the base model. They have a service network just no dealers. And you can test drive one before you buy unlike Fords most popular cars.
      I think you are misinformed.

      Reply
      1. RWFA

        You were going pretty well there until you went full Tesla fanboy by claiming that it’s not possible to test drive Ford vehicles; that’s just not true.

        That’s one advantage Ford has over Tesla, showrooms full of display models, and test drive vehicles.

        Reply
        1. Bob

          I was looking for a Maverick. Could not even find one to test drive. Mach E ? Have not been able to find one of those either. Not a fan boy just a guy looking for a car. Drove 3 Tesla’s no Fords, even though they have two large dealers near me, because they don’t have inventory I am interested in.

          Reply
  3. pat k

    My MME order from April 2022 was messed up, not built, and now sitting in Mexico for the past 2 months built. This is how Ford logistics messes up customers builds. If there was a more efficient system of transport using ships, hotshot transporters, and direct to dealer deliveries Ford would be in a better position. Prices ping ponging, tax credits changing, and incentives lost. 11 months waiting for the MME is not what I consider customer service. It’s customer disservice.

    Reply
  4. Trent

    If my experience is in anyway typical, I can understand the loss of customer loyalty. I reserved a Lightning on 5/21/21. After 18 months of hearing nothing from Ford, 3 price increases that put my preferred truck beyond the EV tax credit threashold, and Ford eliminating the stockholder Z-Plan discount program I gave up my reservation. I do not care for how I have been treated, and will look elsewhere when I replace my current vehicle.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Ford Sent letters late last year to shareholders telling them of the termination of the Z-plan and gave them an opportunity to order under X-plan by the end of 2022.

      Did you not take advantage of this offer?

      Reply
  5. Pw17sdman

    Well the plan to go green has no put Ford in hole. So much attention to Lightening that every other vehicle in production is suffering quality control. Now after over a year of building Lighting’s they have battery issue. Is Ford going to replace batteries in previous Lighting’s. There goes my stock
    They can’t even give date of when they are going to start production of Super Duty. Have nearly 200k orders including mine which will probably be a 24.
    .

    Reply
    1. Bob Dobson

      You Sir are bang on!…….after 6 Explorers Im now on my 5th recall for my 21 Explorer ST……its getting very tiring dealing with SYNC3 and never ending QC issues. Maybe time for a different brand

      Reply
    2. RWFA

      Such hogwash.

      The majority of vehicles having problems were designed before Lightning.

      Additionally, the Lightning operations are mostly separate from the rest of the company (this is especially true wrt the BEV parts of the platform,)

      Reply
  6. Tony Banks

    Poor Build quality and calling your EV SUV a “Mustang” is a great way to lose your loyal fan base. Major car manufactures wish they had something “Iconic” as the Mustang. Yet FMC continues to dilute its image and alienate its fan base

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      I could only laugh at this take. Really, it’s not worth even this much typing.

      Reply
  7. Lance

    Tesla owners are a cult, quite literally. I’ve owned one that parks next to my Ford for over 5 years and it’s simply gotten worse. Tesla customer service is nonexistent and the worst I’ve ever seen like it’s been falling off a cliff. Sure they’re great cars when they work but with the horrible service and wait times it’s insane.

    I’ve seen other tesla owners have parts missing on delivery or 3 trips to the service center for repairs and they ignore it because “it’s expected” “they’re a new company” “it’s still the best car I’ve ever owned” “tesla is the leader in technology and innovation” “my car will get constant updates and will always be better than the day I bought it”

    They literally excuse away bad quality and service like they’re afraid to admit they bought a lemon.

    Reply
    1. Bob

      Tesla owners are a cult, quite literally. Yeah, no.. I have driven both the Model Y and Model 3. Its no cult. They are great vehicles. They are quick, they are quite and comfortable. Not much else you can ask from a vehicle.
      Tesla customer service.. If you think people are angry at that what do you think people think about Ford’s customer service or GM’s when they have major issues?

      Reply
    2. RWFA

      Oh my, Last Chance Lance is back with anti-BEV disinformation but it quickly devolved into anti-Tesla drivel … on a Ford site. WTAF?

      If this is how stupid the singularity will be, humanity has little to fear.

      Reply
  8. Roger Moncrief

    Loyalty!? I and my family was loyal to Mercury for decades. That was a waste of money. I am now loyal to my Edge and it looks like that’s another waste. Hey Ford, how about sticking with great products instead of discontinuing them? Then you’ll have loyalty.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      How were either of these (Merc or Edge) a waste of money? The logic and conclusion here are odd.

      Reply
  9. JB

    I see a bunch of emotional comments here but here’s what Ford is losing customers left and right:

    1- build quality has gone down, and I really mean all the way from low grade interiors to poor long term quality. Escape, Bronco, Explorer…all come immediately to mind

    2- poor value, the typical Ford customer enjoys discounts, cash on hood, etc – with all of that gone, you have to shop around and what you find in the competition is clear: same overall MSRP but much better quality…so you get more for your money!

    If Ford can’t figure this equation down, I fear they will end up becoming a ‘small’ car maker like Subaru. They’ve got the F150 but….you can’t survive off 1 vehicle only.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      While your analysis isn’t structurally incorrect, I think where you place each of these categories vis-à-vis reality is a bit extreme.

      This especially so for the 1 vehicle scenario you think it leads to.

      Reply
  10. Mel Cannon

    I think you are all missing an important point. Tesla makes CARS. Last month I went looking for a new sedan and had to “settle for” a Benz E450. The Mustang GT500 I bought two years ago may be the last Ford I will buy in my 55 years of Ford ownership.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      TBH, although an attractive demographic, 75+ year olds aren’t exactly the sweet spot of the market.

      Reply
  11. Bruce Holberg

    Guy I know has a 2019 F-150 sitting at the dealership. Needs new engine under warranty. They can’t get an engine! They keep giving him loaners, but how is this going to not going to affect his loyalty to Ford?

    Reply
    1. Bruce Holberg

      “How is this NOT going to affect his loyalty?”

      Reply
    2. RWFA

      2019 under warranty? Please elaborate on this.

      Reply

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