Several years ago McKinsey published a white paper that vehicles would reach parity and become a commodity...in that they would all be pretty darn good, and reliable.
Imagine this white paper floating around 15 years ago...needless to say...there were mostly disbelievers, how could vehicles reach parity, and perhaps become appliances ...one would shudder at the thought.
Fast forward to 2011, and most if not all vehicles are darn good, they are below 10th place on the desire of things to have in mature markets...how strong is the desire for a refrigerator?
Agreed...the brand is still a factor...although its a diluted factors with many brands exploring a myriad of niches in the past decade.
We have come to realize, and understand that styling and design that resonates with consumers is a compelling differentiator in competitive market segments. The Koreans have understood the styling differentiator perhaps better than other manufacturers (we will not mention names).
When all the features, air bags, USB ports, Navigation systems, fuel economy have been mentioned...the vehicle with the compelling styling/design that resonates with consumers has a distinct advantage.
What do you think?