By Jason Siu Feb 22, 2017
Now in its 28th year, the J.D. Power U.S. Dependability Study has once again revealed the most reliable automakers.
The J.D. Power U.S. Dependability Study examines problems experienced during the past 12 months by original owners of 2014 model year vehicles. The overall dependability is determined by the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles (PP100), with a lower score representing higher quality. This year, the industry average is 156 PP100, slightly higher than last year’s average of 152 PP100.
But which automakers topped this year’s list?
In 2016, Jaguar was included in the study but wasn’t ranked due to small sample size. This year, however, the British automaker is ranked 10th with a score of 144. In the past few years, Jaguar has bolstered its lineup with several new models, including the XE sedan and F-Pace SUV.
Honda routinely finds itself in the top 10 of most dependable car brands, and this year is no different. It has dropped a couple of spots to ninth place with a score of 143. In last year’s study, Honda scored 126 and was ranked seventh. Helping lead the way for Honda is the Civic, which tied for second in the compact car segment. The Honda Ridgeline was the highest ranked midsize pickup and the Pilot tied for second in the midsize SUV category.
Like Honda, Chevrolet regularly makes an appearance on the list and this year it finishes in eighth place with a score of 142, barely beating Honda. In 2016, Chevrolet finished in sixth place, one spot ahead of Honda just like this year. Helping bolster the American automaker is the Chevrolet Sonic, which was highest ranked in the small car category. The Chevrolet Malibu tied for second in the midsize car segment, while the Camaro took top honors for midsize sporty car. Even though the Chevrolet Silverado HD was highest ranked in the large heavy duty pickup category, the standard Chevrolet Silverado tied for third in the large light duty pickup segment.
While BMW is performing much better than Audi, it still lags behind its main German rival, Mercedes-Benz. Audi scored 153 PP100 while BMW sits towards the top of the list at 139 PP100. It’s an improvement for BMW, which finished in 14th place in 2016’s study with a score of 142. None of BMW’s vehicles made an appearance in the segment awards.
Korean automaker Hyundai saw one of the biggest improvements out of all the automakers, most likely due to its lineup being thoroughly revamped in recent years. Jumping to sixth place with a score of 133, Hyundai improved from 2016’s results, where it finished below the industry average with a score of 158 PP100 and 19th overall. The popular Sonata tied for second place in the midsize car category, while the Tucson was rated third in the small SUV segment.
Once again, Mercedes-Benz is ranked higher than BMW with a score of 131 PP100. The German automaker finished 12th overall in last year’s study with a score of 135. The Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class was the highest-ranked compact premium SUV in this year’s study. The company’s C- and E-Class also finished second in their respective categories, compact premium car and midsize premium car.
Buick continues to be the most reliable American automaker in the U.S., according to J.D. Power. This year, it dropped a spot to fourth place with a score of 126 PP100, noticeably higher than last year’s score of 106 PP100. The Buick Verano tied for second place in the compact car segment, while the LaCrosse was bested by only the Toyota Avalon in the large car category. The Buick Encore also made an appearance, finishing second in the small SUV segment.
Toyota swapped spots with Buick in this year’s study, finishing in third place with a score of 123 PP100. Like Buick, Toyota has an uptick in problems per 100 vehicles after scoring 113 in 2016’s study. Toyota had several models ranked highest in their segments, including the Prius (compact car), Camry (midsize car), Avalon (large car), Prius v (compact MPV), FJ Cruiser (compact SUV), Venza (midsize SUV) and Sienna (minivan).
1. Porsche (tie)
Last year, Porsche almost edged into the top spot with a score of 97 PP100, but that wasn’t enough as the most dependable automaker scored 95. This year, however, the German automaker ties for first place with a score of 110. Porsche didn’t have any vehicles claiming highest-ranked awards, but the Cayenne did finish third in the midsize premium SUV segment.
1. Lexus (tie)
For the sixth straight year, Lexus finds itself on the top of the list – but this year it’s a tie with Porsche. The automaker also received awards for highest ranked compact premium car (Lexus ES), midsize premium car (Lexus GS) and midsize premium SUV (Lexus RX). The Lexus GX also finished second in the midsize premium SUV category.