What the @!#*&! is going on? Dodge, Chevy clobber Toyota in J.D. Power
Dodge has rocketed from its recent place near the bottom of the J.D. Power initial quality study to appear at the very top—very nearly tied with, of all brands, Kia. Chevrolet and Ram were also nearly tied for third and fourth place, with Genesis barely below them, rounding out the top five brands.
Source: J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Initial Quality Study™
The study looks at problems per 100 vehicles, as reported in the first 90 days of ownership, and may over-emphasize factory inspections and dealer prep. The three-year reliability study is generally considered a more valid measure of quality, but it takes three years to see the results.
American labels did well in the above-average region of the chart, with Dodge, Chevrolet, Ram, Buick, GMC, Jeep, and Cadillac all appearing; imports in the top half were Kia, Genesis, Mitsubishi, VW, Hyundai, Lexus, and Nissan.
Under the average were some familiar faces, such as Chrysler, Audi, and Ford; also some unusual ones, like Honda, Toyota, and Subaru.
The worst-rated brands were no surprise; Tesla made its first appearance in the study, with 250 problems per 100 cars, considerably worse than Land Rover’s 228 problems or Audi’s 225 problems. Other “more than two problems per car” brands were Mercedes and Volvo. While Land Rover is traditionally one of the worst brands (along with Fiat, which did not have enough sales to make the chart), Tesla has been reputed to be quite poor in quality control, and this study affirms its reputation.
Clark Westfield grew up fixing up and driving past-their-prime American cars, including various GM and Mopar V8s. He has ghostwritten auto news for the last few years, and lives in Farmingdale, New York.