Fiat Chrysler’s Dodge and Kia Motors have topped an initial quality study of new vehicles sold in the United States based on owner responses, industry consultant J.D. Power stated on Wednesday.
The study observed problems experienced by owners of new 2020 model-year vehicles in the first 90 days of ownership and figured out their initial quality based on the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles.
General Motors’ Chevrolet and Fiat Chrysler’s Ram tied for the third spot.
The study discovered most domestic brands, including Fiat Chrysler’s Dodge, Ram and Jeep and also GM’s Chevrolet, Buick, and Cadillac, ranked above average.
GM’s Chevrolet Sonic achieved the best score for the individual model.
“Collectively, this is the best-ever performance by the Detroit automakers — when compared with the import brands — in the history of the study,” J.D. Power noted.
The consultant said that most premium brands ranked below average, as they generally gear up their vehicles with complex technology, which can result in problems for some owners.
One-fourth of all problems mentioned by new vehicle owners associated with infotainment, including complaints about built-in voice recognition and touchscreens.
Tesla Inc made its debut on the list with a score that suggested 250 problems per 100 vehicles. But the electric automaker was not ranked as it did not meet the needed criteria for a comparative study.
“Unlike other manufacturers, Tesla doesn’t grant us permission to survey its owners in 15 states where it is required,” stated Doug Betts, president of the automotive division at J.D. Power.
The study discovered that GM’s plant in China, which makes the Buick Envision, was making vehicles with the fewest defects or malfunctions.