Exclusive study: how users rate forklift truck brands

Vogel Communications Group has conducted a major study into industrial trucks, asking hundreds of decision-makers in the intralogistics industry to evaluate manufacturers and their products on the basis of a variety of criteria, including quality, financing and development. The findings have been made exclusively available to SIMPLEXITY.

Vogel Communications, a leading German provider of specialist media, polled a total of 459 intralogistics experts. The majority of respondents work in logistics services, engineering and the automotive industry. Around two thirds are decision-makers, holding executive positions at their companies, and themselves have a forklift truck license.

The undisputed No. 1 is Linde Material Handling, with markedly above-average scores in eleven out of twelve categories, and outperforming all other brands in ten categories. The company secured particularly high grades for reliability, innovation and service. Linde MH was “only” regarded as average when it came to price.

When it came to financing packages, Jungheinrich was the frontrunner. With 46 percent positive ratings, the Hamburg-based intralogistics expert was just ahead of Linde Material Handling for leasing and rental. Overall, Jungheinrich took second place, followed by Still in third.

The graphic shows the three best-placed brands, Linde Material Handling, Jungheinrich and Still, together with the average for all brands:

Source: industrial truck study, Vogel Communications

An interesting aspect of the study is that not all categories held the same sway with respondents. When it came to a decision in favor or against a specific manufacturer, quality, reliability, service and long-term availability were the overriding concerns.

“Named by 97 percent, product quality was the most important aspect for almost all respondents,”

states market researcher Anne-Sophie Russ of Vogel Communications. This was closely followed by service response time, with 91 percent, and the long-term availability of products with 90 percent. Less relevance was attributed to awards and forklift truck tests: only 31 percent regarded accolades as important or very important.

To ensure a fair assessment of the brands, only people with experience of their products were invited to participate. The ratings are therefore not simply opinions but based on actual hands-on usage of the vehicles in everyday working scenarios: “That is a much harder currency.”