Lexus wins top spot in vehicle dependability for seventh straight year

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The overall USA auto industry average improved to 142 problems per 100 vehicles in 2017, down 9 percent from 156 problems in 2016, according to the study.

Buick led the mass-market segment with 116 reported problems per 100 vehicles, 10 fewer than past year. Overall dependability is determined by the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles (PP100). For this year's survey, J.D. Power collected responses from 36,896 original owners of 2015 model year vehicles. The study aims to measure the long-term quality of vehicles, including new technologies and features now available to buyers. J.D. Power said customers complain most frequently about problems with voice recognition technology and Bluetooth connectivity.

Another notable trend is the improved quality of mass market brands, which continue to catch up to luxury nameplates in terms of quality.

"Strong dependability scores not only improve demand for used vehicles, but also are a contributor to higher residual values", said Jonathan Banks, Vice President of Vehicle Analysis and Analytics at J.D. Power. "A nine percent improvement is extremely impressive, and vehicle dependability is, without question, at its best level ever".

Enlarge ImageHere's the full results of this year's VDS. Poor Chrysler.                  J.D. Power
Enlarge ImageHere's the full results of this year's VDS. Poor Chrysler. J.D. Power

Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus luxury brand ranked top in a dependability survey for the seventh consecutive year, major US market research firm J.D. Power and Associates said Wednesday. Porsche ranked a close second with 100 problems per 100 vehicles. The result is the third mass-market win by Buick in four years.

Fiat is the most improved brand in this year's VDS, with owners experiencing a remarkable 106 fewer PP100 than in 2017. Infiniti has the largest improvement in rank, moving from 29 to 4. Kia's fifthplace ranking is the brand's best-ever VDS performance.

The survey also said that, while FCA was the third worst rated overall with 192 problems per hundred, Fiat was also the most improved.

Toyota, meanwhile, drove off with six of the 19 segment awards - mostly among the Lexus nameplate.

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