Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Locked
User avatar
Alexa9
Posts: 467
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by Alexa9 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:02 am

How are cars ranked by reliability today and do you trust the reviews? What are the brands to buy and avoid or does it completely depend on the model?
"I think the 'Asian cars good, everything else bad' theory is way out of date. I've found this site to have good reliability data that broadly agrees with the overall market perception in most cases, and seems very good at identifying the problem models. http://www.dashboard-light.com"
Image

User avatar
tcassette
Posts: 121
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2015 12:20 pm
Location: Southeast Tennessee

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by tcassette » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:21 am

Why would you trust a source that lists several makes (Pontiac, Hummer, Scion, etc.) that are not made any more?

bob60014
Posts: 122
Joined: Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:59 pm
Location: The Land Beyond ORD

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by bob60014 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:31 am

Another survey for the junk bin. Mercury no longer made either. To show Mercury rated higher than Ford is interesting as the vehicles are made the same with the exception of some cosmetic parts.

SirToolman
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2017 4:35 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by SirToolman » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:32 am

tcassette wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:21 am
Why would you trust a source that lists several makes (Pontiac, Hummer, Scion, etc.) that are not made any more?
These cars are still on the road. If you were buying a used one, wouldn't you be interested in reliability?

AZAttorney11
Posts: 429
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2015 12:12 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by AZAttorney11 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:35 am

It is very model specific. For example, the Audi A4 is a well known dog of a car. But the Audi Q5 is much more reliable (the link you posted has it being the most reliable model in its class).

snowox
Posts: 132
Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:17 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by snowox » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:46 am

Hummer reliability #3? Delete

thangngo
Posts: 441
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 2:08 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by thangngo » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:47 am

I tried to find a citation and/or source of data but no luck. They must use their own data, which we should view these reports with a grain of salt.

harrington
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:09 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by harrington » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:25 pm

This is kind of funny......Fiat is dead last at 0 and my 2012 Fiat 500 has over 100,000 miles on it and has easily been the most reliable car I ever owned :beer

fortfun
Posts: 262
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2016 7:31 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by fortfun » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:33 pm

I'd agree with Toyota/Lexus but many others are way off. Jeep usually gets rated near the bottom of most lists, yet it's above average in this one. I agree, it depends on the model. Probably even with Toyota. Highlanders are made in Japan and Tacomas were made in Mexico for a time. I suspect the ones coming off the line in Japan had better quality control than the Tacomas in MX (but I might be wrong).

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 5883
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:47 pm

There's more to it than just brand. A Ford Focus with the automatic transmission is by far the least reliable car on the planet. A Ford Fusion is one of the better ones.

Each model and option makes a difference. Back when Fusion and Mazda 6 were the same car, a bunch of us at my work had both cars. We figured out that the 2.3L 4 cyl Mazda engine in either car would go forever. The 6 cyl Ford engine was prone to constant problems. Luckily, I had the 2.3L in a Mazda 6 with a 5 speed manual. I never did anything besides put gas, oil, tires and filters in the car. My buddies with automatic V6 cars were constantly using loaners.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

Liberty1100
Posts: 195
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2014 12:36 pm
Contact:

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by Liberty1100 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:53 pm

I trust Consumer Reports WAY before that site that you mentioned:

https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rel ... -stack-up/

User avatar
bottlecap
Posts: 5064
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:21 pm
Location: Tennessee

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by bottlecap » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:57 pm

The methodology only includes power train issues - engines or transmissions.

Engine problems are not typical and transmission problems are only slightly more common. But both can be expensive.

JT

NJdad6
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:51 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by NJdad6 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:58 pm

I don't think that list was ever accurate. According to more trustworthy sources brands like MB, Saab, Chevy tend to be below average and Mazda, Subaru, Hyundai, Kia and even Audi are above average. Although far from perfect CR tends to be the most reliable source for this data. However, as stated reliability is very model/year specific.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:24 pm

@Alexa9, why are you re-posting my post verbatim from a locked thread?

As I said in that thread, dashboard-light is very up-front with what they monitor. This chart is long-term reliability of powertrain related issues only.

http://www.dashboard-light.com/click-here-first/

Like that thread, this thread is also not actionable.
Last edited by onourway on Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:27 pm

NJdad6 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:58 pm
I don't think that list was ever accurate. According to more trustworthy sources brands like MB, Saab, Chevy tend to be below average and Mazda, Subaru, Hyundai, Kia and even Audi are above average. Although far from perfect CR tends to be the most reliable source for this data. However, as stated reliability is very model/year specific.
Nearly every other source, including CR, focuses primarily on initial quality or problems over the first several years of ownership. Dashboard-light is the only source I know of that compiles actual real-world data of older, used cars.

NJdad6
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:51 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by NJdad6 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:29 pm

onourway wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:27 pm
NJdad6 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:58 pm
I don't think that list was ever accurate. According to more trustworthy sources brands like MB, Saab, Chevy tend to be below average and Mazda, Subaru, Hyundai, Kia and even Audi are above average. Although far from perfect CR tends to be the most reliable source for this data. However, as stated reliability is very model/year specific.
Nearly every other source, including CR, focuses primarily on initial quality or problems over the first several years of ownership. Dashboard-light is the only source I know of that compiles actual real-world data of older, used cars.
Still think it is nonsense.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:35 pm

NJdad6 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:29 pm
Still think it is nonsense.
I'm having a hard time seeing how it is nonsense. They collect data directly from the auction houses of what problems are actually being found in their inventory.

alfaspider
Posts: 975
Joined: Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:44 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by alfaspider » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:50 pm

I'm not sure it makes much sense to compare makes over a wide number of years and models on a blanket basis.

It makes no sense whatsoever to compare the reliability of a 2005 Chevy Cobalt to a 2017 Porsche 911 Turbo S. They are on different planets in terms of cost and design. But that's what you are getting with this chart.

Compare the actual cars you are thinking of buying. If no data for the specific car, look for cars with the same or similar powertrain.

protagonist
Posts: 4953
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:47 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by protagonist » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:54 pm

CR's reliability ratings are vastly different.
For example, CR rates Kia as the third most reliable model, just behind Toyota and Lexus, while OP's rating system has Kia rated near bottom. https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rel ... -stack-up/ Similar discrepancies exist for many other models.
No idea who or what to believe, or how data is generated.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:59 pm

alfaspider wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:50 pm
I'm not sure it makes much sense to compare makes over a wide number of years and models on a blanket basis.

It makes no sense whatsoever to compare the reliability of a 2005 Chevy Cobalt to a 2017 Porsche 911 Turbo S. They are on different planets in terms of cost and design. But that's what you are getting with this chart.

Compare the actual cars you are thinking of buying. If no data for the specific car, look for cars with the same or similar powertrain.
The primary value of this site, in my mind, is that you can drill down into each and every model and model year to see changes in reliability among a brand, model, or class of vehicles. This overall chart is useful only in a broad sense of answering the question, who is making reliable powertrains?

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:01 pm

protagonist wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:54 pm
CR's reliability ratings are vastly different.
For example, CR rates Kia as the third most reliable model, just behind Toyota and Lexus, while OP's rating system has Kia rated near bottom. https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rel ... -stack-up/ Similar discrepancies exist for many other models.
No idea who or what to believe, or how data is generated.
Again, the CR report data is for new cars. A car can be extremely reliable when new, but extremely troublesome by 150k miles.

User avatar
Epsilon Delta
Posts: 6573
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2011 7:00 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by Epsilon Delta » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:02 pm

onourway wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:35 pm
NJdad6 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:29 pm
Still think it is nonsense.
I'm having a hard time seeing how it is nonsense. They collect data directly from the auction houses of what problems are actually being found in their inventory.
There are a very large number of ways to collect and analyze data that are nonsense. Lots of them look okay. That's what makes statistics hard.
For example in the graphics there are no error bars. It's possible there was one Mini with a cracked block which is bad for the owner of that car, but tells us little about Minis as a whole.

neilpilot
Posts: 1086
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2015 1:46 pm
Location: Memphis area

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by neilpilot » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:03 pm

protagonist wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:54 pm
CR's reliability ratings are vastly different.
For example, CR rates Kia as the third most reliable model, just behind Toyota and Lexus, while OP's rating system has Kia rated near bottom. https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rel ... -stack-up/ Similar discrepancies exist for many other models.
No idea who or what to believe, or how data is generated.
Also, the rating information is vastly different. CR is predicted reliability of current (i.e. new) vehicles. The OP's rating, weather garbage or not, is composite reliability of used vehicles over a compendium of model years. The 2 are a comparable as apples & oranges. Both are fruit, but that's as far as it goes.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:08 pm

Epsilon Delta wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:02 pm
There are a very large number of ways to collect and analyze data that are nonsense. Lots of them look okay. That's what makes statistics hard.
For example in the graphics there are no error bars. It's possible there was one Mini with a cracked block which is bad for the owner of that car, but tells us little about Minis as a whole.
If you dig into the data that makes up that one chart you will find that there is more information to be had. For example, the number of samples that they have for each vehicle in the list. Some of their sample sizes are quite small and may not tell us much useful. But the data is there.

The data may not be perfect, but it consistently matches up with broad generalizations about many different makes, models, and even known problematic years. For example the Toyota Matrix scores a 77 on their chart. About average for Toyota. The Pontiac Vibe scores an 80 - way above normal for Pontiac - the most reliable Pontiac listed. Not surprising as it's really just a re-branded Matrix.

The Ford Fiesta has been a trainwreck with transmission problems. It scores nearly off the chart in that metric, at 31% of samples having this issue overall, and the extremely problematic 2013 model year at nearly 50%. This is a known defect industry wide, and the data reflects that.

NJdad6
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:51 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by NJdad6 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:17 pm

The chart above is useless. Quick review of the site also provides little value. We need specifics on model years, engine and transmission options for this to be helpful. Maintenance history is also important to understand why some drive trains may have issues (timing belts, etc).

However, will definitely check it out if I am in the market for a Mercury, Oldsmobile or Pontiac :D

protagonist
Posts: 4953
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:47 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by protagonist » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:32 pm

onourway wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:01 pm
protagonist wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:54 pm
CR's reliability ratings are vastly different.
For example, CR rates Kia as the third most reliable model, just behind Toyota and Lexus, while OP's rating system has Kia rated near bottom. https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rel ... -stack-up/ Similar discrepancies exist for many other models.
No idea who or what to believe, or how data is generated.
Again, the CR report data is for new cars. A car can be extremely reliable when new, but extremely troublesome by 150k miles.
Good point.

That said, projecting reliabilty forward ten years based on data from ten year old models today seems problematic, since manufacturer standards can change dramatically over a 10 year period, especially for relative newcomers. A 2017 Kia may be of very different quality from a 2007 Kia , for example.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:39 pm

protagonist wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:32 pm
Good point.

That said, projecting reliabilty forward ten years based on data from ten year old models today seems problematic, since manufacturer standards can change dramatically over a 10 year period, especially for relative newcomers. A 2017 Kia may be of very different quality from a 2007 Kia , for example.
I don't believe this site is trying to say that. Perhaps it is unclear because this chart was posted out of context in a somewhat provocative manner (again, Alexa9 re-posted this chart and my quote, verbatim and out of context from another thread) but this is merely an overview of all of the data they have collected. This is what that data says, overall, for the cars they have data on. It is not meant to be forward-looking, and it does not make any statement regarding the quality of 2017 models (on which they have virtually zero data).

User avatar
Alexa9
Posts: 467
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by Alexa9 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:43 pm

onourway wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:24 pm
@Alexa9, why are you re-posting my post verbatim from a locked thread?

As I said in that thread, dashboard-light is very up-front with what they monitor. This chart is long-term reliability of powertrain related issues only.

http://www.dashboard-light.com/click-here-first/

Like that thread, this thread is also not actionable.
This thread is more actionable. I tried to quote you but it wouldn't let me quote a locked thread. I thought you had a great post. I messaged the mod but never heard back so I started a new thread. What is the most reliable carmaker seems to be more arguable and actionable IMO. We'll see.

onourway
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by onourway » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:45 pm

Alexa9 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:43 pm
This thread is more actionable. I tried to quote you but it wouldn't let me quote a locked thread. I thought you had a great post. I messaged the mod but never heard back so I started a new thread. What is the most reliable carmaker seems to be more arguable and actionable IMO. We'll see.
Thank you for following up. :sharebeer

an_asker
Posts: 1927
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2013 2:15 pm

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by an_asker » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:00 pm

onourway wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:35 pm
NJdad6 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:29 pm
Still think it is nonsense.
I'm having a hard time seeing how it is nonsense. They collect data directly from the auction houses of what problems are actually being found in their inventory.
So, if an auction house gets a 20 year old Toyota Camry with transmission issues, it'll reflect on all Toyotas that they have transmission issues? Is the data parsed for car longevity at all? It appears that others on this thread have a tough time reconciling with the conclusion presented without tangible data (to be honest, I didn't even click on the link provided - by you or by OP!)

User avatar
midareff
Posts: 5106
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 10:43 am
Location: Biscayne Bay, South Florida

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by midareff » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:07 pm

I guess I'm not buying the numbers. Had two new Porsche convertible's that needed to go to the P dealer every 6-8 weeks for warranty repairs. Were they fun to drive.. hxll yes. Were they chick magnets . hxll yes. Would I have kept either of them one day after the warranty ran out.. hxll NO. My Benz started it's sixth year in my service the beginning of the month. If I wasn't taking a Benz I've been lusting after a long time (by ordering) off my bucket list I'd keep it another 5 years or more.

User avatar
LadyGeek
Site Admin
Posts: 41647
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 5:34 pm
Location: Philadelphia
Contact:

Re: Least/Most Reliable Carmakers Today

Post by LadyGeek » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:52 pm

This thread has run its course and is locked (not personal nor actionable). General comment threads are off topic in the forums with "Personal" in the title. See: A reminder that non-investing general comment threads are OT
- It must be personal. In other words, you must be asking about your own situation. You can also ask on behalf of someone specific, such as a family member.

- It must be actionable. You must be able to do something specific with the replies that will make a difference in your situation.
If you have a specific question, please ask directly and provide sufficient information for members to supply appropriate advice.
Alexa9 wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:43 pm
...I messaged the mod but never heard back so I started a new thread. What is the most reliable carmaker seems to be more arguable and actionable IMO. We'll see.
Restarting a locked thread is not permitted. See: Locked Topics
if a topic is locked, please do not start up another thread to continue the discussion
If there are any questions, PM me.
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

Locked