Press Release

Beijing Hyundai and Dongfeng Yueda Kia Score Highest in Overall APEAL among Consumers in China

More Than Half of Car Buyers in China Opt for Navigation and Bluetooth Technology

Shanghai: 18 November 2015 — Korea’s mass market auto brands Beijing Hyundai and Dongfeng Yueda Kia earn the highest marks for overall vehicle appeal among vehicle owners in China, according to the
J.D. Power 2015 China Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study.SM 

The APEAL Study, now in its 13th year, serves as the industry benchmark for new-vehicle appeal. It measures how gratifying a new vehicle is to own and drive based on owner evaluations during the first two-to-six months of ownership. 

Following are some of the key findings in this year’s study. 

  • Hyundai and Kia Top the Charts: Beijing Hyundai achieves the highest score in overall APEAL among consumers in China, with a score of 769. Dongfeng Yueda Kia (763) comes in second. Each brand scores 71 points and 65 points, respectively, above the mass market segment average. 
  • China’s Domestic Brands Lag Imports: When broken down by country, Korean brands rank highest, with a score of 766. Following Korean makes in the rankings are European (714), U.S. (700) and Japanese (698) brands. China’s domestic brands rank lowest in overall APEAL (677). There is a 36-point gap in scores between international (713) and domestic (677) makes. 
  • Higher Demand for Audio/ Communication/ Entertainment/ Navigation (ACEN) Features: Installation rates for both Bluetooth technology (50%) and navigation systems (61%) have increased year over year (10 percentage points and 29 percentage points, respectively). Notably, the navigation system installation rate has surpassed that in the United States (48%). In both China and the United States, higher overall APEAL scores are correlated with ACEN features installation.

“In the Chinese market, the perception of luxury and reliability, along with the presence of broad technological capabilities, drives overall customer satisfaction,” said Dr. Mei Songlin, vice president and managing director at J.D. Power. “Our study shows that there needs to be an ongoing effort to meet owner expectations with respect to the availability of the latest in-cabin features without deviating from the tried-and-true formula of providing excellent performance of this technology in order to attract and satisfy new-vehicle buyers.” 

Individual Model APEAL Scores 

Among the 10 model-level segment awards, Beijing Hyundai (Verna, Mistra, ix25 and ix35) receives four awards. Audi (A6L and Q5) receives two awards. Four of the highest-ranked models (Hyundai Verna, Hyundai Mistra, Hyundai ix25 and Porsche Macan) are also award recipients in the J.D. Power 2015 China Initial Quality StudySM (IQS). In total, 10 vehicle segments are eligible for awards in the 2015 China APEAL Study.

Models receiving segment awards are: 

  • Compact: BAIC Senova D20
  • Compact Upper: Hyundai Verna
  • Midsize Basic: Citroen C-Elysee
  • Midsize: Kia K3/K3S
  • Midsize Upper Economy: Hyundai Mistra
  • Midsize Upper: Toyota Camry Classic
  • Midsize Luxury: Audi A6L
  • Compact SUV: Hyundai ix25
  • Midsize SUV: Hyundai ix35
  • Midsize Luxury SUV: Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan 

The 2015 China APEAL Study is based on evaluations from 21,611 owners of new vehicles purchased between October 2014 and June 2015. The study analyzes models in 21 vehicle segments and includes 270 different passenger-vehicle models from 71 different brands. The study was fielded from April through August 2015 in 57 major cities across China. Redesigned for 2015,[1] the study also examines 77 attributes across 10 vehicle performance categories: exterior; interior; storage and space; ACEN; seats; HVAC; driving dynamics; engine/ transmission; visibility and safety; and fuel economy.   

Media Relations Contacts

Michelle Meng; Beijing, China; +86 01 6569 2702;

John Tews; Troy, Michigan USA; 001 248 680 6218;

About J.D. Power Asia Pacific

J.D. Power has offices in Tokyo, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, Malaysia and Bangkok that conduct customer satisfaction research and provide consulting services in the automotive, information technology and finance industries in the Asia Pacific region. Together, the six offices bring the language of customer satisfaction to consumers and businesses in Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. Information regarding J.D. Power and its products can be accessed through the Internet at

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[1]Due to redesign of the 2015 China APEAL Study, direct comparisons with previous-year index scores are not recommended.