IRVINE, Calif. –
Kelley Blue Book says Subaru “continues to grow from strength to strength.” The automaker over the past couple of years added a new model, the three-row Ascent SUV, and has established a reputation for brand-specific features like all-wheel drive and safety features such as EyeSight drivers’ assists.
Because of all of that, Subaru won the Best Overall Brand and Most Trusted Brand categories in Kelley Blue Book’s 2020 Brand Image Awards.
Among luxury automakers, Tesla made an impressive showing, winning Best Overall Luxury Brand. Tesla also won the categories for Best Value Luxury Brand, Most Refined Luxury Brand, Best Performance Luxury Brand and Best Car Styling Luxury Brand.
Kelley Blue Book based its 2020 Brand Image Award winners on annual new-car buyer perception data. It calculated the award categories among luxury, non-luxury and truck shoppers.
For 2020, Subaru’s Best Overall Brand win among non-luxury automakers is its third in the past five years. To win in that category, Subaru achieved the highest average score across all ratings of non-luxury models. In addition to winning Most Trusted Brand, Subaru also won the Best Performance Brand category.
“Subaru’s wins are based on the automaker’s reputation for delivering safe, spacious, fuel-efficient vehicles that satisfy the needs of both everyday consumers and those seeking increased utility/performance at the right price point,” Kelley Blue Book said in a news release.
As for Tesla, Kelley Blue Book said its sleek, all-electric designs bring a fresh look to the market. The brand has brought innovative technology for luxury vehicle consumers at a desirable cost, and that has resulted in “overwhelmingly positive car-shopper perceptions,” Kelley Blue Book said.
Tesla has also long been a leader on electric vehicle batteries, and for years it seems to have had a much lower battery cost than other OEMs.
For the second year in a row, Toyota won Best Overall Truck Brand. The automaker showed the highest average score across all ratings of truck models and 12 weighted factors of importance.
Kelley Blue Book said the Tacoma and Tundra held their own and helped Toyota win the Best Overall Truck Brand award, even as truck shopping reached new heights in 2019 and several new models entered the market.
Additional automakers won repeat Brand Image Award victories for 2020. For the sixth consecutive year, Honda won Best Value Brand among non-luxury automakers. Lexus won Most Trusted Luxury Brand for the fifth year in a row. For the second consecutive year, Dodge won Best Car Styling Brand among non-luxury automakers.
The 2020 Brand Image Awards are based on consumer automotive perception data from Kelley Blue Book Brand Watch study. An online brand and model perception tracking study, Brand Watch taps into more than 12,000 in-market new-vehicle shoppers annually on KBB.com. The study shows how shoppers perceive important factors driving their purchase decisions. It highlights brand/model familiarity and loyalty among new-car shoppers.
“Building brands that leave positive impressions with car shoppers is of the utmost importance to automakers who wish to stand out and succeed in an increasingly crowded marketplace,” said Cox Automotive vice president of research and market intelligence Isabelle Helms.
Helms continued, “Delivering products that are compelling to shoppers, backed by solid marketing communications, has proven to influence purchase considerations and outcomes. Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Award winners recognize the automakers who are on top of their game in the minds of new-car shoppers.”
The list of KBB Brand Image Award winners can be found below:
Best overall brand: Subaru
Most trusted brand: Subaru
Best value brand: Honda
Most refined brand: GMC
Best performance brand: Subaru
Best car styling brand: Dodge
Best luxury brands
Best overall luxury brand: Tesla
Most trusted luxury brand: Lexus
Best value luxury brand: Tesla
Most refined luxury brand: Tesla
Best performance luxury brand: Tesla
Best car styling luxury brand: Tesla
Best overall truck brand