J.D Power Survey Gives Caterpillar, Eaton Fuller High Rankings

A J.D. Power and Associates study ranked Caterpillar’s C15 engine highest for customer satisfaction in the vocational Class 8 engine category and noted Eaton Fuller’s performance in the transmission category.

For the fourth consecutive year, Caterpillar placed first in diesel engine satisfaction among vocational Class 8 customers, the independent marketing information services company announced this month.

“Caterpillar is a perennial strong performer that continues to lead the rest of the industry by a large margin,” said Etchells, J.D. Power spokesman. The C15 and the C12 represent 92 percent of Caterpillar’s heavy-model mix. “Both receive stellar marks for customer satisfaction,” he said.

Caterpillar C15 owners reported fewer than average problems – 19 problems per 100 vehicles – compared with the heavy-engine average of 40 problems per 100 vehicles. Eighteen percent of C15 owners said they had an engine problem in the past two years, while 31 percent of all vocational truck owners reported problems.

The California-based firm gauges customer satisfaction with engines in the areas of quality and warranty, performance, and noise and vibration. Study results are based on responses from 2,675 customers of 2-year-old heavy-duty trucks.

J.D. Power also stated that the Cummins M11 “also performed above industry average” in the vocational category.

Eaton Fuller had “particularly strong ratings” in quality, warranty and design of its transmissions.

Etchells said 29 percent of truck buyers had help from a salesperson when specifying an engine. Customers who picked out their engine without a salesperson’s assistance reported greater satisfaction levels after owning it two years than those who had help in choosing an engine. However, Peterbilt and Western Star customers reported higher engine satisfaction when the salesperson assisted them with engine selection than customers who were not helped.

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