Reliability report: Honda bumps Toyota from top spot, domestics still lag behind imports
The Toyota brand has slipped from first to fifth in reliability rankings, a new survey finds. Based on average predicted reliability for all models sold under a given brand, the survey found that Toyota has fallen behind Honda, Acura, Subaru and even its own Scion brand in average vehicle reliability.
Consumer Reports, the firm responsible for the survey, also said that it would no longer recommend the Toyota Camry V6 or Toyota Tundra V8 because of poor reliability.
While not ranking as high as their Japanese counterparts, domestic automakers continued to show improvements. General Motor's Buick division was the only domestic brand to crack the top ten -- coming in at number 10 -- but Ford showed the most improvement of the Big Three. According to CNN, 93% of Ford, Lincoln and Mercury vehicles showed average or better reliability. In addition, Ford's Mercury division ranked 11th, the Ford brand came in at 13th and Ford's luxury division, Lincoln, occupying the 14th spot.
Consumer Reports' head of auto testing, David Champion, says that Ford's quality continues to steadily improve and is out pacing improvements made its cross-town rivals. "GM and Chrysler have been more hit-and-miss," said Champion.
While improvements are being made, the survey shows domestic automakers still have a lot of ground to make up before they are on par with imports' reliability. Consumer Reports gave 39 vehicles the title of "Most Reliable," with only four domestic models receiving the honor -- the Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan, the two-wheel drive Ford F-150 V6 and the Pontiac Vibe. Of note, the Vibe is the sister car of the Toyota Matrix.
In contrast, 22 of Consumer Reports' 44 "Least Reliable" vehicles were from domestic automakers. GM occupied the bottom two spots with the Pontiac Solstice and Cadillac Escalade EXT -- which were rated at 234% and 220% less reliable than the average vehicle, respectively.
European automakers showed strong improvements, lead by the Porsche brand -- moving up 20 spots to number nine overall. Ford's Jaguar brand -- which is currently up for sale -- improved by 17 spots and BMW's Mini moved up 16 places.