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Discussion Starter #1

When it comes to predicted reliability -- coming after years of gab from Detroit about how its cars don't break down anymore -- six American brands rank dead last in Consumer Reports' latest predictions on automotive reliability being released right now. At the other extreme, the best brand is Toyota's Scion.

The worst is Chrysler and its least-reliable model is the Town & Country minivan, pictured above. A third of Chrysler, Jeep or Dodge models are considered much worse than average including the new Dodge Journey crossover. Only one Chrysler product is recommended by the magazine, the Dodge Ram 1500 pickup in the four-wheel-drive version. Last year, none got the nod.

And the best: The top seven are all Japanese, led by Toyota's Scion, with the eighth a South Korean, Hyundai. Toyota and Honda dominate the reliability charts. Three of the top five models are made by Toyota, including the Lexus ES, Toyota Venza, and Toyota Yaris hatchback. Number one is the Honda Insight, pictured above right.

In the press release, Consumer Reports touts the reliability of Fords, saying it is the only Detroit maker with "world-class reliability," yet the top ranking Ford brand is Mercury at 10th, followed by Ford at 16th and Lincoln at 20th. The report lauds the Ford Flex crossover, but rips on all-wheel-drive Lincoln clones of Ford cars, the MKS, MKX and MKZ. "They are now consistently making cars with world-class reliability," said Rik Paul, automotive editor of the magazine. The Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan, both built on the same platform, beat out the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry in reliability for the second year in a row.

There are vast differences between models. A new Honda Insight is 27 times less likely to have a problem than the biggest dog in the pack, the Volkswagen Touareg, Consumer Reports says.

Here's the brand ranking, best to worst:

1. Scion

2. Honda

3. Toyota

4. Infiniti

5. Acura

6. Mitsubishi

7. Lexus

8. Hyundai

9. Porsche

10. Mercury

11. Saab


13. Suzuki

14. Kia

15. Mazda

16. Ford

17. Nissan

18. Volvo

19. Buick

20. Lincoln

21. Volkswagen

22. Pontiac

23. Mercedes-Benz

24. Audi

25. Chevrolet

26. BMW

27. Mini

28. GMC

29. Saturn

30. Jeep

31. Dodge

32. Cadillac

33. Chrysler​


3,436 Posts
Discussion Starter #5

Scion was #1 last year as well; I think the advantage is that they only have 3 relatively basic models that sell @ a low volume (not as much tech/gadgets like luxury models). In other words, they have a lot less opportunity for something to go wrong.

3,436 Posts
Discussion Starter #7

Toyota Motor Corp., which has recalled more than 10 million vehicles in the past year, tied with Honda Motor Co. for the most models with top scores in Consumer Reports’ annual reliability survey.

Toyota and Honda each led in 5 categories and continue to “dominate” the ratings, the Yonkers, New York-based magazine said in a statement today. Ford Motor Co. was the only U.S. automaker with top scores, in 2 categories. General Motors Co. improved the most among the domestic companies.

“The major Asian automakers, including Honda and Toyota, are still out in front,” said Consumer Reports, which based its findings on responses of subscribers who owned or leased 1.3 million cars and trucks. “Among the three domestics, Ford continues to build the most reliable vehicles.”

Most of the recalls at Toyota, the world’s largest automaker, followed reports of sudden, unintended acceleration, which caused the company to slow its vehicle-development process and scrutinize suppliers. Toyota’s U.S. market share fell 1.4 percentage points to 15.2% this year through September, according to Autodata Corp. in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.

The Toyota City, Japan-based company’s Yaris small car, FJ Cruiser mid-size sport-utility vehicle, Lexus LX luxury SUV, Sienna minivan with V-6 engine and front-wheel drive and Tundra full-size pickup truck led in Consumer Reports’ categories.

Top-scoring models for Tokyo-based Honda were the Acura TL with front-wheel drive for upscale cars, Acura RL luxury car, CR-V small SUV, Acura RDX upscale compact SUV and Ridgeline compact pickup.

Ford, GM

Ford, which today reported record 3rd-quarter profit of $1.69 billion, won top scores for its Fusion Hybrid family car and Flex EcoBoost large SUV. Consumer Reports said 90 percent of the Dearborn, Michigan-based company’s models had at least average reliability.

For Detroit-based GM’s Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC brands, 69% had at least average reliability. Cadillac rose 7 places from a year earlier, the biggest improvement, and the percentage of Chevrolet models with average or better reliability increased to 83% from 50%.

“Some of GM’s redesigned vehicles have scored well,”
David Champion, senior director of the magazine’s auto test center, said in the statement. “The company has also dropped many of its below-average models. Ford has put its emphasis on fine-tuning existing platforms and limiting the number of new- model introductions.”

None of Chrysler Group LLC’s vehicles scored above average, and 12 of the 20 models for which enough data were available for a rating were below average, the magazine said.

Luxury Woes

Three European luxury brands, Volkswagen AG’s Audi, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG’s BMW and Daimler AG’s Mercedes- Benz, scored among the worst this year, Consumer Reports said. Almost three-fourths of Audi models and about half of BMW and Mercedes vehicles were rated below average, the magazine said.

Porsche SE’s Boxster had the best score, and the Audi A6 3.0T and Tata Motors Ltd.’s Jaguar XF had the worst, according to the statement.

Consumer Reports, published by the nonprofit advocacy group Consumers Union, surveyed magazine or online subscribers earlier this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Craig Trudell in New York at [email protected]

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jamie Butters at [email protected]
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