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John Deere, Eicher Rank Highest in Tractor Performance and Quality in India

Published On Feb 23, 2016By Lisa Pradhan

The results of a study revealed yesterday concludes that in case of performance and quality of the tractors, satisfaction among Indian truck owners declines across all four horsepower (HP) segments. This can be due to heightened long-term equipment reliability expectations of tractor owners because of a weakened market segment in India. As per the study, tractor owners expressed maximum satisfaction in John Deere and Eicher vehicles.

The J.D. Power 2016 India Tractor Product Performance Index (PPI) StudySM takes two indices into consideration while measuring performance satisfaction of the vehicles—machine performance, and quality and reliability. The machine performance index assesses tractor owners’ evaluations in seven categories such as hydraulic and coupling, driveability, engine and transmission, overall styling and design, driving comfort, tractor structure, and tyres. The quality and reliability index analyses owners’ experiences and ratings of quality issues (actual and perceived).

The study ranks tractors in four segments: below 31 horsepower, 31-40 horsepower, 41-50 horsepower, and above 50 horsepower. Eicher, the auto maker famous for tough and heavy-duty vehicles, performs quite well across all seven machine performance categories and ranks highest in the below 31 HP segment with a score of 787 points. However, John Deere ranks the highest in all other HP categories such as the 31-40 HP segment (794 points), the 41-50 HP segment (807 points), and the above 50 HP segment (821 points).

As compared to the previous year, at an industry level, tractor owners’ satisfaction with product performance declined by 39 points to 771 on a 1,000-point scale in 2016. The report showcases that both the indices have contributed to the decline in satisfaction level.

Speaking on the issue, Dr. Gordon Shields, Director, J.D. Power, said, “As weak signs of recovery subdue sentiments in the agriculture market in India, customers’ expectations of their tractor’s performance and quality have greatly intensified. Faced, on occasion, with acute financial problems, farmers now expect to own their tractors for a longer period (averaging 10 years) and defer their new tractor purchase until their income improves.”

Tractor usage and operating economics are the most frequently reported problems. Specific issues include excessive or uneven tyre wear, bulb failure, hard to operate gearshift, noisy brakes and excessive fuel consumption.

Elaborating on the issue further, Yukti Arora, Manager at J.D. Power, said, “The problem severity has increased considerably this year. With farm incomes declining, owners are more critical of their machine’s performance and quality, and have a much lower tolerance toward defects.”

Suggesting a viable solution, Dr. Shields said that tractor manufacturers need to ramp up their efforts to meet the rising expectations of customers on core performance and quality issues. This will aid in improving the positioning and overall perceptions of the brand.

See Also:

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