Repeat winners dominate J.D. Power boat awards

Published online: Feb 15, 2008 News Soundings Trade Only
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Now in its seventh year, the study examines the sales, service and product experience of new-boat owners. Owner satisfaction with new boats is measured in seven segments: ski/wakeboard; fiberglass bass boats; small runabouts (16 to 19 feet); large runabouts (20 to 29 feet); coastal fishing (17 to 30 feet); pontoons; and express cruisers (24 to 33 feet).
Overall customer satisfaction index scores are based on performance in eight factors: cabin, engine, ride and handling, helm and instrument panel, design and styling, sound system water sports and fishing.
Manitou ranks highest among pontoon manufacturers, performing particularly well in ride and handling. Manitou is closely followed in the segment by Bennington, while Harris FloteBote and Premier tie to rank third in the segment. 
"Pontoons in particular have come a long way as far as advancements in features and technologies," said Todd Markusic, senior director of the powersports practice at J.D. Power and Associates. "Usage of technologies such as satellite radio and MP3 players has steadily increased since 2006. Additionally, the average horsepower of pontoons has increased steadily as well. Pontoons are certainly reaching a new level of sophistication."

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