J.D. Power and Associates Reports: Airframe and Avionics Are Critical in Providing Business Aircraft Owners and Operators With a Positive Ownership Experience

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., Feb. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The airframe and avionics suite, which are both crucial in operating an aircraft safely and efficiently, play a key role in aircraft owner and operator satisfaction, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2007 Business Aviation Satisfaction Study(SM)released today. This study, an industry first, is conducted in association with AVIATION WEEK's Business & Commercial Aviation (B/CA) magazine, which is the leading provider of operational, management and safety information for the business aviation community. J.D. Power and Associates and AVIATION WEEK are business units of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

The inaugural study examines the overall satisfaction of business aircraft owners and operators of fixed-wing, turbine-powered and pressurized-cabin aircrafts produced within the past 20 years. Overall satisfaction is measured on a 1,000-point scale. The study includes three areas of focus: airframes,avionics and engine.

"B/CA and J.D. Power and Associates have captured the voice of the customer in the business aviation community," said Tom Henricks , president of AVIATION WEEK. "Aircraft, engine and avionics manufacturers will greatly benefit from this valuable insight."

Airframe Satisfaction

Overall satisfaction with the airframe is based on seven key factors. In order of importance, they are: maintenance; flight performance; warranty; flight deck; exterior; interior; and major systems. Overall satisfaction with the aircraft ownership experience is primarily driven by the airframe, which represents 52 percent of the satisfaction index.

The study finds that nearly 70 percent of owners and operators are actively involved in the purchase/lease of their business aircraft. These customers are more satisfied with their overall airframe experience compared to those who are not a part of the purchase/lease process (an airframe satisfaction index score of 737 points vs. 693 points, respectively).Customers who purchased or leased a new aircraft also tend to be moresatisfied than those purchasing or leasing a used model.

Avionics Satisfaction

Quality of the equipment drives overall satisfaction with the avionics suite, which includes electronic components and flight controls. Avionics quality represents 42 percent of the avionics satisfaction index score,followed by maintenance and warranty. The onboard weather radar, electronic displays and flight management systems have the largest impact on customer satisfaction with avionics quality.

"As avionics capabilities become more advanced, business aircraft owners and operators are demanding higher standards for performance, reliability and product support," said Jim Gaz, senior director of the travel practice at J.D.Power and Associates. "They need near-perfect dispatch reliability to get their passengers to business appointments safely, and on time."

Engine Satisfaction

Among engine factors that drive overall satisfaction, quality has the most significant impact, accounting for 35 percent of the engine satisfaction index score. Specifically, the length of time between engine inspections in largepart drives satisfaction with engine quality among aircraft owners and operators.

"By expanding the time between major maintenance intervals, manufacturers can drive down overall operating costs," said Gaz. "Manufacturers have been particularly successful in implementing this strategy with turbine engines,which adds to its benefits."

The 2007 Business Aviation Satisfaction Study is based on responses from more than 600 owners, operators and flight department managers regarding their business aircraft experience. Survey responses were collected between Augustand November 2006 .

Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is an ISO 9001-registered global marketing information services firm operating inkey business sectors including market research, forecasting, consulting,training and customer satisfaction. The firm's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually.


AVIATION WEEK is the largest multimedia information and services provider to the global aviation, aerospace and defense industry, and includes the publications Aviation Week & Space Technology, Defense Technology International, Aviation Daily, Overhaul & Maintenance, Aerospace Daily & Defense Report, ShowNews, Business & Commercial Aviation, The Weekly of Business Aviation and the World Aerospace Database. The group's Web portal,www.aviationweek.com, offers the industry's most reliable news, information,intelligence and features, and its Aviation Week Intelligence Network (AWIN)at www.aviationweek.com/awin is the industry's most integrated business tool for managers, business developers, buyers and technical professionals across the entire aviation and aerospace field. The group also produces 12 major conferences and exhibitions in the MRO, defense and programs sectors.Information is available at www.aviationweek.com/conferences.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies:

Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP) is a leading global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial services, education and business information markets through leading brands such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Powerand Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries. Sales in 2006 were $6.3 billion. Additional information is available athttp://www.mcgraw-hill.com.

No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and Associates. www.jdpower.com/corporate

SOURCE J.D. Power and Associates

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