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Japanese Automakers Slide, Koreans Surge in New J.D. Power Initial Quality Study

Japanese brands, as a group, post worst performance in 29 years.

by on Jun.17, 2015

Hyundai has scored major gains in quality with products like the 2015 Tucson, according to Power.

This story contains updated information.

If the latest J.D. Power survey is any indication, you might need to re-think just about everything you thought you knew about automotive quality.

The latest Initial Quality Survey, or IQS, finds that Japanese automakers, on the whole, have suffered a significant slide in the quality charts, with only three brands in the Top 10 this year. But the real shocker might be the surge in Korean quality. Kia, a brand long known for cheap, mediocre products, was second, behind top-ranked Porsche, with Hyundai ranked fourth. Jaguar, also struggling to reverse a reputation for poor quality, was third.

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For the Korean brands, which are caught up in a ferocious battle for market, the survey results represent a measure of vindication.  “We are extremely proud of the results,” said Mike Ofiara, a spokesman for Kia, which finished second in the overall ranking. “We’ve come a very long way. It’s representative of a lot of hard work by a lot of people.”


Japan Makers Dominate Consumer Reports Reliability Survey

Detroit makers slip, European show serious problems.

by on Oct.25, 2011

Ford's Lincoln MKX came in for criticism in the latest Consumer Reports reliability study due to technical problems with its infotainment system.

Japanese automakers dominate the latest annual automotive reliability study by Consumer Reports magazine –- while Detroit makers suffered some unexpected setbacks and European brands, including those producing some of the marker’s most luxurious products, experienced significant reliability issues, according to more than 1 million owners who responded to the survey.

Led by Scion, the low-priced, youth-oriented Toyota brand, Japanese marques captured the top nine spots in the widely-followed study. Ford, meanwhile, which had become a benchmark for Detroit’s comeback in quality, suffered a sharp decline, plunging from 10th to 20th among the 28 brands covered by the study.

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“The fortunes have changed for the Big Three” overall, noted David Champion Consumer Reports’ chief of automotive testing, during a presentation to the Detroit Automotive Press Association.

Based on the results from 1.3 million surveys completed by CR subscribers, the data found Ford’s Explorer SUV, compact Focus and subcompact Fiesta models all coming in below average during their first year on the market, while several previously well-rated models dropped to below average due to a mix of problems.