GM, Toyota score big in J.D. Power dependability ratings

Looking for a good used car?

The J.D. Power Dependability Ratings and Awards is a good place to start.

The dependability study looked at problems reported during the past 12 months by 33,560 original owners of three-year-old vehicles, that is, 2013s, in 19 categories.

General Motors Company (Chevrolet, Buick and GMC) and Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota and Lexus) were the top manufacturers with eight and six category wins, respectively.

Ten brands earned category wins, led by Chevrolet with four, Buick, Lexus and Toyota with three each, and Fiat, GMC, Honda, MINI, Mercedes-Benz and Nissan with one each.

The ranking is based on problems in eight vehicle system categories including: exterior; features/controls/displays; seats; interior; the driving experience; audio/entertainment/navigation; heating, ventilation and cooling, and engine/transmission.

The results don’t mean there aren’t other great vehicles from which to choose based on ratings. For example, the Toyota Prius v won the compact multi-purpose vehicle category with an overall dependability “among the best” with five “Power Circles” – a rating matched by the Kia Soul. And the Buick Verano’s five-circle rating was matched by the Toyota Corolla in the compact car category, with five other vehicles scoring four circles for a “better than most” rating.

Other categories and winners, along with competing JDP five-circle models are:

City car – Fiat 500.

Small car – Honda Fit, winner, followed by Nissan Versa and Hyundai Accent, plus one four-circle model.

Compact premium car – Lexus ES, winner, followed by the BMW 1 Series and six four-circle winners.

Compact sporty car – MINI Cooper and MINI Coupe|Roadster, winners, followed by two four-circle cars.

Midsize car – Chevrolet Malibu, winner, followed by Hyundai Sonata, Toyota Camry and Buick Regal, with two more models getting four-circle “better than most” ratings from JDP.

Midsize premium car – Lexus GS, winner, followed by one car with four circles.

Midsize sporty car – Chevrolet Camaro.

Large car – Buick LaCrosse followed by two four-circle models.

Small SUV – Buick Encore followed by two vehicles with four-circle ratings.

Compact SUV – Chevrolet Equinox, winner, followed by Toyota’s FJ Cruiser and three four-circle models.

Compact premium SUV – Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class, winner, with two four-circle models.

Midsize SUV – Nissan Murano followed by nine vehicles with four-circle ratings.

Midsize premium SUV – Lexus GX followed by Lexus RX and Porsche Cayenne, and a four-circle winner.

Large SUV – GMC Yukon, winner, followed by Chevrolet Tahoe, which also received five circles.

Minivan – Toyota Sienna, winner, followed by the Chrysler Town & Country with four circles.

Large heavy-duty pickup – Chevrolet Silverado HD.

Large light-duty pickup – Toyota Tundra followed by one four-circle model.

“Being recognized by J.D. Power for having the most dependable vehicles in key segments is a tremendous honor and a demonstration that Chevrolet is the brand that customers can truly count on,” said Brian Sweeney, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet, in a press release.

In announcing its results, Toyota noted the awards’ significance: “J.D. Power’s [study] finds that long-term durability continues to be an important consumer purchase consideration.”

JDP provides dependability ratings for about 160 models by category on its website.

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