Domestic car brands underrated: J.D. Power

By Aaron Smith, CNNMoney.com staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- A new study gives high marks to more than two dozen vehicle brands for improving their quality in 2010 -- including second-ranked Lincoln and third-ranked Buick -- but said that many of these names suffer from lousy consumer perceptions.

"Producing vehicles with world-class quality is just part of the battle for automakers," said David Sargent, vice president of automotive research at J.D. Power and Associates, in a press release. "Convincing consumers to believe in their quality is equally as important."

He said that it takes "considerable time to positively change consumer perceptions of quality and reliability."

The study said Toyota -- which has come under fire in recent months for problems with sudden acceleration, inspiring a massive recall -- "continues to perform well in long-term dependability" and won more segment awards than any other model in 2010.

Toyota owners reported relatively few problems, the study said, with 128 problems per 100 vehicles, compared to the industry average of 155. The results are based on responses from more than 52,000 owners of 2007 model year vehicles during the time between October and December of 2009.

All three of Ford's car brands rated above average in the survey while two of GM's surviving brands -- Buick and Cadillac -- also did.

GM's other two survivors, Chevrolet and GMC, rated below average as did all three Chrysler Group brands, Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep.

Porsche led the vehicle dependability study, averaging 110 problems per 100 vehicles, according to J.D. Power, a California-based marketing information company that conducted the annual study.

Land Rover placed last among the 36 vehicles studied in this report, with 255 problems per 100 vehicles. Japanese carmaker Suzuki rated only slightly better with 253 problems per 100 vehicles.

Ford's Lincoln luxury brand ranked second in the survey, barely edging out General Motors' Buick brand. Ford's Mercury brand ranked fifth, just behind Toyota's Lexus luxury brand.

The study said vehicles that are reliable but "avoided at relatively high rates due to customer concerns about reliability" are Cadillac, Ford, Hyundai, Lincoln and Mercury.

Sargent said automakers can improve customer perceptions by providing extended warranties, including features that give the car a "rich" feel, and improving the quality of new models over their predecessors. To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Find Your Next Car
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,501.65 0.00 0.00%
Nasdaq 4,148.34 21.37 0.52%
S&P 500 1,878.61 3.22 0.17%
Treasuries 2.69 0.00 0.07%
Data as of 8:35pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Facebook Inc 60.87 -0.49 -0.80%
Bank of America Corp... 16.34 -0.03 -0.18%
Microsoft Corp 39.86 0.17 0.43%
Verizon Communicatio... 46.28 -1.15 -2.42%
Micron Technology In... 26.16 -0.09 -0.34%
Data as of 4:01pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe reach pact avoiding trial in lawsuit claiming they promised not to hire employees away from one another. More

Hundreds of postal workers nationwide protested outside Staples' stores on Thursday. More

Federal regulators are poised to lay down new rules of the road for how Americans access the Internet. More

Schwinn, Trek and Cannondale are all iconic American bicycle brands. But none of them are made in the United States. More

Do you feel like you are overworked? Here are how other people deal with the stress and politics in their jobs. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.