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Most (& least) reliable new cars

Top brands stay up while infotainment aggravations persist

Last updated: October 2014
Fiat 500L

When you buy a brand-new car, the last thing you want is an unscheduled trip back to the dealer to fi x some problem that should never have been there in the first place. But every year, our comprehensive annual auto reliability survey tells us that some buyers will be trekking back to service center waiting rooms over and over again.

The biggest news: The area that garners the largest growing number of complaints by far is infotainment systems and associated electronics. These are the audio, navigation, and in-car communications systems that include the touch screen, unified multi-function controller,
portable music interface, Bluetooth pairing, voice-command system, backup camera, and so forth.

Those findings are from our 2014 Annual Auto Survey, which was conducted by the Consumer Reports National Research Center. They’re based on subscribers’ experiences with 1.1 million vehicles. We use that pool of data to compile reliability histories and predict how well new cars that are currently on sale will hold up.

Read on for more highlights and to see how the brands rank. More detailed reliability information can be found on the car model pages.

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