What you need to know

Consumer loyalty is prevalent in other industries, whether it’s consumers shelling out $500 for a Dyson vacuum or the diehards that only shop at Trader Joe’s. Consumer loyalty, while not always obvious, is still alive and well for some brands. And despite the many songs that have been written about one’s love for a particular truck or car, when it comes to auto brands, consumers aren’t feeling strong emotional ties to any OEM (original equipment manufacturer). Nearly 45% of consumers aren’t repurchasing their vehicles from the same auto brand. Instead, they’re hopping from brand to brand in the hopes of a reliable vehicle that comes from an automaker who understands their needs while providing the transparency they’ve been asking for.


Loyalty is, by definition, “the quality of being loyal,” or, “a strong feeling of support or allegiance.” When analyzing brand loyalty, however, consumers may have their own definition. Mintel has sought to refine the sense of what it means to be loyal within the automotive industry.

Automotive loyalty stems from four pillars: trust, transparency, understanding and reliability (see Four Pillars of Automotive Loyalty). These are the building blocks that help consumers feel warm and fuzzy about a specific automaker. More specifically, automotive loyalty is what drives consumers to purchase from one automaker over another. For the purpose of Mintel’s analysis, consumers do not have to be loyal to every brand under an automaker’s umbrella; a consumer can be a loyal Toyota buyer, but not loyal to Lexus.

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