Consumer Reports: American Cars Are Mostly Terrible (Except For Buick)

Consumer Reports has released its annual Auto Reliability Survey, and the findings…well, if you keep up with car news, the findings won’t come as much of a surprise. The CliffsNotes version is pretty simple:

  • Asian brands are mostly great (Acura and Infiniti excepted). Toyota earns top honors, nabbing the #1 and #2 spots with Lexus and Toyota, respectively.
  • European brands are meh or worse than meh (Audi excepted).
  • American brands are the worst of all (except for Buick, which was ranked #7 out of 28).
  • When it comes to reliability, the worst company of all is Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. FCA’s Ram, Jeep, and Fiat brands finished at the very bottom of Consumer Reports’ list, with Chrysler and Dodge faring only slightly better. This is pretty much what we’ve seen in every other reliability report issued in the past I-don’t-know-how-many years.

In fact, FCA’s scores were so bad, the company issued a statement in response:

“We greatly value customer feedback and use it to continuously improve our vehicles. Because of this fact, we’re significantly accelerating our pace of improvement for our entire product lineup,” said Matt Liddane, Vice President – Quality, FCA – North America. “We compete with many other global players in an industry that’s always evolving and is certainly not standing still; so, we need to continue to push harder.”

Which raises the question: did FCA really need to see this study before making the bold choice to rev up improvements? Because the signs have been on view for a looooong time.

FYI, a small number of automakers were excluded from the survey due to its sample size. According to Consumer Reports, “We excluded Jaguar, Land Rover, Mitsubishi, Scion, Smart, and Tesla because we lack data on two or more of their models.”

You can read Consumer Reports’ own summary of highlights here. The full chart of scores is reposted below.

Consumer Reports 2015 reliability study