DETROIT (Bloomberg) -- General Motors Co.'s Cadillac brand and Toyota Motor Corp.'s namesake division and luxury Lexus line topped the American Customer Satisfaction Index's annual ranking of automakers.
Toyota was the only non-premium brand in the top five, tying Cadillac and Lexus with 87 on a scale of 100, followed by Lincoln and Mercedes-Benz with 86. BMW was No. 11, receiving an 83, dropping three points to its lowest mark since an 80 in 1997.
The Toyota score is "a surprise," Claes Fornell, who created the index in 1994, said in a phone interview. "Toyota makes a fair amount of fairly low-priced cars. For them to be that well-received is impressive, especially when you have a company like BMW scoring lower."
The index is based on interviews with about 70,000 customers annually concerning satisfaction with goods and services. The annual auto rankings, based on data from 5,000 surveys collected during the second quarter, were released today. Each company's score is based on a sample of 250 telephone interviews with consumers.