JD Power Rates Arai Top Lid

Brent Avis
by Brent Avis
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.-For the fourth consecutive year, Arai helmets rankhighest in consumer satisfaction with motorcycle helmets, according to theJ.D. Power and Associates 2002 Motorcycle Helmet Satisfaction StudySMreleased today.

Receiving the top score in five of the 11 drivers of helmet satisfaction,Arai ranks highest among the 18 helmet brands included in the study. Araireceives high marks for overall fit and comfort, ease of strapping on thehelmet, ventilation, scratch resistance of the face shield and consumers'overall rating of their helmet.

Shoei and Nolan follow Arai in the rankings...

"Arai is doing everything right, from the design of their helmets to thesales process," said Stephen Crewdson, researcher for J.D. Power andAssociates. "They try to make every part of the helmet experience apositive one."Crewdson adds that while most manufacturers make one shape of helmet invarious sizes, Arai makes helmets in a number of shape configurations,resulting in optimal fit and comfort.Consumers cite comfort and fit, style and color, and price as the topconsiderations when purchasing a motorcycle helmet.

"It's interesting that consumers list price a distant third behind comfortand style, in terms of considerations when buying a motorcycle helmet,"Crewdson said. "If you're going to ride a motorcycle for hours at a time,you definitely want a helmet that's going to fit well and be comfortable towear."

Because riders place such a high priority on helmet comfort and fit, manymanufacturers are discouraging the sale of helmets at locations other thanat licensed dealerships, including on the Internet, so customers are assureda proper fit by trained salespeople, Crewdson said.

The 2002 Motorcycle Helmet Satisfaction Study is based on responses frommore than 9,000 purchasers of new 2001 model-year motorcycles. Those ownersprovided information about their most recent helmet purchase experience andhelmet use, offering insight on the shopping experience, process, price andproduct satisfaction.

Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is aglobal marketing information services firm operating in key business sectorsincluding market research, forecasting, consulting, training and customersatisfaction. The firm's quality and satisfaction measurements are based onactual responses from millions of consumers annually.

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