The motor industry’s most viable rating agency says the introduction of engines that meet revised EPA regulations is once again taking a toll on heavy-duty truck quality and customer satisfaction, as customers are reporting more problems with their truck engine. This is according to their 2012 U.S. Heavy-Duty Truck Customer Satisfaction Study released Wednesday.
Overall customer satisfaction with heavy-duty trucks declines to 737 index points on a 1,000-point scale in 2012, compared with 751 in 2011, primarily due to an increase in the number of problems experienced. The study finds that quality of Class 8 trucks that are one model year old has decreased, with problem levels rising 9 percent to 223 problems per 100 trucks (PP100) in 2012, up from 204 PP100 2011.
Overall quality is determined by the level of problems experienced per 100 trucks, with a lower score reflecting higher quality. Much of the overall quality decline is attributed to a higher rate of engine- and fuel-related problems, which have increased by 14 percent from 2011 (81 PP100 vs. 71 PP100, respectively).
The most problematic engine and fuel problems are driven by technology that is designed to reduce emissions from heavy-duty truck engines.
And the issue doesn’t stop there.