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J.D. Power 2012 Initial Quality Study (IQS) Released: Lexus Tops Chart 20
Posted by Malcolm Hogan in Automotive, Initial Quality, J.D. Power and Associates, News, Technical on 06 20th, 2012

Each year J.D. Power and Associates release an Initial Quality Study composed of a 228-question survey conducted by responses from U.S. consumers that purchased or leased a new vehicle. Based on 74,000 responses from consumers, the 2012 IQS survey reveals brand quality from the number of issues reported averaged from problems per 100 vehicles to give each nameplate a corresponding ranking.

This year, Lexus tops the list for the second year in a row where it was followed by Jaguar, Porsche, Cadillac, Honda, Acura, Infiniti, Toyota, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. Also finishing above the industry average were Mazda, GMC, Nissan, Ram and Chevrolet.

It was hard to rise and easy to fall this year as automakers scored the biggest improvement in quality since 2009 and sliced the average number of problems reported per 100 vehicles to 102 from 107 in 2011, Power said.

Automakers make quality an extremely important aspect of vehicles produced today. With an abundance of new electronics and devices finding their way into today’s automobiles, they remain to be a major factor in studies such as J.D. Power’s IQS. Within the study it was noted that a rising number of ‘problems’ were in fact issues where consumers had difficulty utilizing certain features instead of it being an actual ‘broken’ or ‘flawed’ item. The single biggest problem reported this year was voice-recognition devices that didn’t work properly. Maybe this could be a breakthrough for Apple integrating Siri in select vehicles.

View the complete 2012 J.D. Power and Associates IQS chart below and see where your favorite vehicle make placed this year.

2012 J.D. Power and Associates nameplate IQS ranking
Lexus 73
Jaguar 75
Porsche 75
Cadillac 80
Honda 83
Acura 84
Infiniti 84
Toyota 88
Mercedes-Benz 96
BMW 97
Mazda 97
GMC 99
Nissan 99
Ram 99
Chevrolet 100
Industry Average 102
Audi 105
Buick 106
Hyundai 107
Kia 107
Lincoln 107
Volvo 108
Subaru 109
Jeep 110
Suzuki 115
Chrysler 116
Scion 117
Ford 118
Land Rover 119
Dodge 124
Mitsubishi 124
Volkswagen 124
MINI 139
Fiat 151
smart 151

average problems per 100 vehicles

Toyota Wins, Ford Loses In Latest Initial Quality Study 24
Posted by Kurt Ernst in Automotive, Ford, Initial Quality, JD POwer, Kurt, News, TOYOTA on 06 24th, 2011

Ford's MyFord Touch interface. Image: Ford Motor Company

Last year it was Toyota’s turn to get a beat-down in J.D. Power’s annual study of initial quality, thanks to ever-present headlines about unintended acceleration and a string of product recalls. This year it’s Ford’s turn, but their disappointing showing has little to do with product quality; instead, it’s more about Ford taking the lead in vehicle infotainment systems.

In 2010, Ford ranked fifth for initial quality. In 2011, the complexity of their MyFord Touch and SYNC systems saw the automaker plunge to 23rd position in the initial quality report. Despite a few well-documented problems with MyFord Touch (such as the occasional screen freeze), much of their fall stems from the fact that consumers simply can’t grasp the operation of MyFord Touch systems, and the specific sequence of voice commands required by SYNC isn’t always intuitive. To remedy this, Ford is borrowing a page from Apple’s playbook and launching a Genius-Bar-like service at Ford dealers, where product experts will (patiently) guide customers through the operation of MyFord Touch and SYNC.

As for actual product manufacturing defects, Ford fared well and earned two quality awards for their Taurus sedan and their F-150 pickup. Toyota, who had fallen to 21st overall in last year’s study, climbed back to seventh position, with above-average quality (fewer defects) on their vehicles.

Source: J.D. Power & Associates