Yamaha Named Strongest Motorcycle Brand of 2012 by Harris Poll

Dennis Chung
by Dennis Chung

When you think of soft drinks, you picture Coca-Cola. When you think of cell phones, you picture the Apple iPhone. When you think of cookies, you picture Oreos. When you think of motorcycles, you picture … Yamaha?

That’s right. Yamaha edged out Harley-Davidson as the strongest motorcycle brand in the U.S. for 2012, according to the Harris Poll EquiTrend study of the country’s healthiest brands.

Since 1989, the Harris Poll EquiTrend study has been comparing brands in numerous categories to determine the overall healthiest brands in the U.S. The study produces a score for each brand measuring its brand equity, customer connection and overall buzz.

For the 2012 study, Harris surveyed 38,529 consumers over the age of 15 in the U.S. between Jan. 31, 2011 and February 20, 2011. Each consumer was asked to rate 40 randomly selected brands. Each of the 1,529 brands included in the study were evaluated about 1000 times, with ratings received from a broad spectrum of people of different ages, genders, ethnicities, regions and income, weighed using the same methodology Harris uses for its election polling.

In the motorcycle category, consumers evaluated five brands: Harley-Davidson, Yamaha, Honda, Kawasaki and Suzuki. Yamaha emerged with the highest average rating of 50.88, edging past last year’s top motorcycle brand, Harley-Davidson which received a score of 50.53. Harris also noted Yamaha had one of the largest year-over-year increases among all 1,529 brands.

Harris did not release the scores for Honda, Kawasaki and Suzuki, but noted they received below the category average of 48.20. Considering how Yamaha and Harley-Davidson are just a couple of points above the average, it’s likely the other brands were not too far behind.

[Source: Harris Poll]

Dennis Chung
Dennis Chung

Dennis has been a part of the Motorcycle.com team since 2008, and through his tenure, has developed a firm grasp of industry trends, and a solid sense of what's to come. A bloodhound when it comes to tracking information on new motorcycles, if there's a new model on the horizon, you'll probably hear about it from him first.

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