A new J.D. Power dependability study finds that the top three most reliable car brands are Porsche, Lexus and Toyota. Lexus and Porsche showed the fewest problems after three years of ownership, however, technology troubles drug down the overall dependability ratings, according to a new survey from research firm J.D. Power.
Owners of 2014 models, reported 156 issues per 100 cars in the past 12 months, on average. The results are up four from last year’s survey, says J.D. Power in the 2017 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study.
Of the problems reported, 22 percent involved balky tech, whether it was related to the audio systems, communication, infotainment or navigation. Last year, the figure of these reported issues was 20 percent.
However, most of the problems involved smartphones and other devices that just refused to pair through Bluetooth and voice-recognition systems that had trouble recognizing voices. The next problem in line was that batteries failed or wore out prematurely.
The 10 best-selling models also averaged fewer problems, coming in at some 134 per 100 cars. The best-selling truck, the Ford F-150, and the best-selling car, Toyota Camry, both led their respective categories in the survey.
“Buyers are increasingly avoiding models with poor reputations for dependability, so manufacturers can’t afford to let their quality slip,” says Dave Sargent, vice president of global automotive at J.D. Power, in a statement.
As for the best brands overall, the tie for first place was between Lexus and Porsche, with the fewest problems of 110 per 100 cars. For the past six years straight, Lexus has remained at the top.
The car coming in at the worst brand was Fiat, with 298 per 100 cars, followed by Jeep and Infiniti.
Third and fourth place in the best brands, making a strong mark for non-luxury brands, was Toyota and Buick.
“The good news is consumers don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a very dependable vehicle,” Sargent said.
Following behind Toyota and Buick, Mercedes-Benz came in fifth, Hyundai in sixth, then BMW, Chevrolet, Honda and Jaguar followed.
The most improved vehicle was Hyundai. Hyundai came in at 133 problems per 100 vehicles, shedding 25 problems per vehicle. J.D. Power says it was Hyundai’s best showing ever.
Meanwhile, Dodge and Ford only improved by 21 problems per 100 vehicles. However, Land Rover was up by 20 problems per 100 vehicles.
It was a tie between Ford and Ram for spot No. 26, with 183 problems per 100 vehicles.