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Consumer Reports' car reliability survey: Japanese brands top list

The results of Consumer Reports' annual car reliability survey are in, and Japanese automakers came out on top.
October 28, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
The results of Consumer Reports' annual car reliability survey are in, and Japanese automakers came out on top.

The 2014 Subaru Forester SUV is the most reliable new car you can buy, according to the survey.

To find out which cars are least likely to give you trouble, Consumer Reports asked subscribers if they'd had any serious car problems in the last 12 months.

"We gathered responses on 1.1 million cars, and we used that huge sampling of data to predict how well new cars that are now on sale will hold up," said Rik Paul with Consumer Reports.

The most reliable carmakers? Lexus, Toyota, and Acura - all Japanese brands - took the top three spots. But there was something new in the survey this year.

"European and American manufacturers have moved up in the rankings. They're giving the Japanese automakers some tough competition," said Paul.

Audi came in fourth place, making it the most reliable European brand. Volvo, also European, jumped up to No. 7. GMC, with SUVs like the Acadia, was named the top American brand at No. 9. But the news for Ford and Lincoln was not so good.

"Ford and Lincoln have had trouble with the MyTouch infotainment system over the last couple of years. Our survey found that complaints went down when Ford updated the system, but the problem rate is still too high," said Paul.

Overall, Ford ended up near the bottom of the new-car reliability rankings. And at the very bottom: cars from Mini had the most problems in Consumer Reports' survey.

While Consumer Reports called the 2014 Subaru Forester the most reliable car you can buy, the survey found the least reliable model, too. It's Ford's C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid.

Consumer Reports announced Monday it won't recommend the 2014 Honda Accord V6 and the Nissan Altima sedans because of poor reliability scores. It also won't recommend two other Japanese mainstays: the Toyota Camry and RAV4, noting both flunked a frontal crash test from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.


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