JD Power released its annual new vehicle baseline study last week. The conclusions are clear: the current upheavals in the industry have a direct impact on vehicle reliability.
Posted at 11:45am
Admittedly, the study has its limitations as it only focuses on the first 90 days of ownership. Despite all of this, it remains an interesting probe to assess the overall health of the industry. Based on a survey of 223 questions filled out by 84,165 American owners, this year it published record numbers in 36 years of its existence for the number of problems found per vehicle.
Compared to 2021, new models purchased in 2022 are 11% more likely to be affected by any type of issue. It’s the brand new models that are overrepresented among the blockheads. JD Power also notes that luxury brands generally perform worse (196 issues per 100 vehicles) than general manufacturers (175 issues per 100 vehicles).
Unsurprisingly, it’s the infotainment systems where the complaints are highest. They now play a major role in many models for activating common functions and alone account for 45 problems per 100 vehicles examined.
Interestingly, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles are more problematic than their internal combustion engine counterparts. They each have 239 problems/100 vehicles and 240 problems/100 vehicles compared to 175 problems/100 vehicles for petrol models. Note, however, that the influx of entirely new Proposals equipped with this mechanic can largely explain these numbers.
If we focus on the overall reliability of the brands, we see that the American manufacturers do well. Buick is in first place (139 problems/100 vehicles) ahead of Dodge (143 problems/100 vehicles) and Chevrolet (147 problems/100 vehicles). Apart from a few specific models, these manufacturers tend to offer older vehicles that are mainly powered by internal combustion engines. Now let’s hope the industry pulls itself together.