It is the time of year when automobile makers release their new 2015 models. Before you head to the car dealership, be sure to know which cars and trucks did not make the grade. Below is a summary of the most unreliable car and truck brands according to Consumer Reports. The main problem across brands was the interactive consumer electronics systems such as GPS, touchscreens and other interfaces. As consumers demand more electronic gadgets, carmakers appear to be struggling to keep up and are releasing cars to market before they are ready. Another overarching problem was the acquisition of Dodge and Jeep by Fiat. Since the acquisition, reliability has suffered. Finally, less expensive European brands appear to be declining.
10. Ram—Since the acquisition of Ram by Fiat, reliability has suffered, making this once solid model less desirable.
9. Volkswagen—It is an iconic brand but executives seem to have put more resources into its more expensive brand, Audi, and the less-expensive Volkswagen has declined.
8. Hyundai—This brand has tried to go upscale but it is no longer meeting the expectations of its original customers or its new patrons.
7. Nissan—Its simpler models are doing well which shows that more complexity often means more problems.
6. Jeep—This brand has also been bought by the underperforming Fiat. In addition, its models with more consumer electronics do not fare as well.
5. Dodge—Once again, this a Fiat problem. Even the Dodge Caravan, once a stalwart of the minivan options, did not receive good marks.
4. Cadillac—This brand had the most problems with consumer electronics and seems to be an example of an older brand struggling with the demands of today’s car buyer.
3. Ford—Ford also had problems with electronics, mostly with Ford Touch interactive system failing to respond.
2. Lincoln—Lincoln’s interactive electronic system was built off the same base as Ford and has experienced similar problems.
1. MiniCooper—Surprisingly, the MiniCooper ranked as the most unreliable. This offering by BMW may look cute but don’t buy it if you want to avoid the service station.
When purchasing a car, especially one with a sophisticated electrons system, it is important to do your research to ensure you are buying a brand that is reliable enough to meet your needs. The following cars and trucks were ranked the most reliable in each category:
- Large/Upscale–Lexus ES
- Luxury Car–Audi A6
- Luxury Compact SUV–BMWX1
- Luxury Compact Car–Infiniti G37
- Sports Car–Porche Boxster
- Luxury SUV–Lexus RX
- Midsize Car–Subaru Legacy
- Coupe/Convertible–Mercedes E Class
- Subcompact–Honda Fit
- Full-Size Pickup–Toyata Tundra
- Compact Car–Scion xB
- Small SUV–Subaru Forester
- Hybrid/Electric–Toyota Prius
- MidSize SUV–Toyota 4runner
- Large SUV–Toyota Sequoia
- Compact Pickup–Honda Ridgeline
- Minivan–Toyota Sienna