Toyota Motor Corp.’s Scion, Toyota and Lexus remain in the top three positions, while Ford continued its abrupt plunge for the second straight year in Consumer Reports’ survey of auto reliability.
On the list of 28 brands, Scion remained first, followed by Toyota and Lexus; Ford fell to 27th position in 2012 after dropping from 10th to 20th in 2011. The top-seven brands on the list are Japanese.
“Ford’s bumpy road can be seen in the numbers,” Jake Fisher, Consumer Reports’ new director of automotive testing, said. “Sixty percent of Ford-branded models and half of Lincolns were below average in predicted reliability, and none placed above average.”In June, the Ford brand placed 27th in the annual Initial Quality Study by J.D. Power and Associates.
Audi rose 18 places from the 2011 survey and was this year’s top-rated European brand in eighth position.
Cadillac was the highest-rated domestic brand in 11th postion, gaining 14 places.
Consumer Reports uses reported experiences for the most-recent three years of each model to predict future reliability. The data in the 2012 Auto Reliability Survey are statistics from subscribers’ experiences with 1.2 million vehicles.
Consumer Reports reported Ford suffered because its expanded MyFord/MyLincoln Touch system is problematic, Ford Explorer, Fiesta and Focus have “more problems than normal.” and the automaker’s six-speed, dual-clutch PowerShift automatic transmission is also problematics.
Here’s the Consumer Reports survey of auto reliability list in order:
1. Scion; 2. Toyota; 3. Lexus; 4. Mazda; 5. Subaru; 6. Honda; 7. Acura; 8. Audi; 9. Infiniti; 10. Kia; 11. Cadillac; 12. GMC; 13. Nissan; 14. Mercedes-Benz; 15. Chevrolet, 16. BMW; 17. Hyundai; 18. Volkswagen; 19. Jeep; 20. Volvo; 21. Buick; 22. Mini; 23. Chrysler, 24. Dodge; 25. Ram; 26. Lincoln; 27. Ford; 28. Jaguar.
Article Last Updated: October 29, 2012.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.