TrueDelta Updates Reliability Survey

Michael Karesh
by Michael Karesh
truedelta updates reliability survey

Thanks in part to the help of people from TTAC, TrueDelta received a record number of responses to October’s Car Reliability Survey—nearly 19,000. Updated car reliability stats have been posted to the site for 488 cars, up from 459 three month ago. There are partial results for another 370. These stats cover through the end of September 2010. Other sources of car reliability information will not cover the third quarter of 2010 until the summer or even fall of next year.

Among early 2011s, we now have full results for the Hyundai Sonata and Kia Sorento. Though in its first model year, the thoroughly redesigned Sonata has been better than average. This is not a given for Hyundai—the Genesis sedan with tech package and the Genesis Coupe both had glitchy first years. The Sorento has been about average so far.

We’ll have full results for a few more 2011s with the next update, in February. Early data on the Ford Fiesta is not good.

TrueDelta also has updated “nada-odds” and “lemon-odds” stats. These report the percentage of cars with no repairs and the percentage with 3+ repair trips in the past year, respectively. Among the covered 2010s, the Aud Q5 and Hyundai Genesis Coupe were the most likely to require repairs, and by a substantial margin. Only 35 percent of Q5 owners and 42 percent of Gen Coupe owners reported no repairs. The Jaguar XF would likely join them t the bottom if we’d had enough responses for it.

Or is the glass one-third full? Even with the worst 2010 (by this stat), your odds of a repair-free car were better than one in three. Look at much older cars, and even with the worst (the 2001 Volvo S60 and V70) your chances of a repair-free car are about one in four. This explains why, whenever a model gets a poor reliability rating, plenty of owners can honestly claim they’ve had no problems. On the other hand, with the most reliable models (Toyota Prius, Toyota Yaris, Honda Insight, Honda Fit, Honda CR-V) your chances of a repair-free car are about nine in ten.

Only among the least reliable cars (generally 8+ years old and European) are your odds of 3+ repair trips in a year greater than one in ten.

We’d like to provide these stats for all cars—just a matter of getting more owners involved.

To view the updated results:

Car Reliability Survey results


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4 of 20 comments
  • Ian Williams Ian Williams on Dec 01, 2010

    How about "Peaches" rather than Nada ?

    • Michael Karesh Michael Karesh on Dec 02, 2010

      I considered peaches, plums, and cherries. None of them seemed to communicate "zero repairs" well. And each had critics.

  • Hreardon Hreardon on Dec 02, 2010

    Question for you: how are you classifying "repairs"? It says that the Q5 and Hyundai required more repairs than average, but what does that mean? Eg: check engine light or unable to drive the car?

    • Michael Karesh Michael Karesh on Dec 02, 2010

      All reported repairs are posted to the "repair histories" section of the site. I haven't looked closely at these two cars, but the great majority of all reported repairs are minor to moderate. Few render the car undriveable.

  • Inside Looking Out "And safety was enhanced generally via new reversing lamps and turn signals fitted as standard equipment."Did not get it, turn signals were optional in 1954?
  • Lorenzo As long as Grenadier is just a name, and it doesn't actually grenade like Chrysler UltraDrive transmissions. Still, how big is the market for grossly overpriced vehicles? A name like INEOS doesn't have the snobbobile cachet yet. The bulk of the auto market is people who need a reliable, economical car to get to work, and they're not going to pay these prices.
  • Lorenzo They may as well put a conventional key ignition in a steel box with a padlock. Anything electronic is more likely to lock out the owner than someone trying to steal the car.
  • Lorenzo Another misleading article. If they're giving away Chargers, people can drive that when they need longer range, and leave the EV for grocery runs and zipping around town. But they're not giving away Chargers, thy're giving away chargers. What a letdown. What good are chargers in California or Nashville when the power goes out?
  • Luke42 I'm only buying EVs from here on out (when I have the option), so whoever backs off on their EV plans loses a shot at my business.