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The most reliable car brands

Our second annual car reliability survey covers 10,520 cars owned by our members. Find out which brands they rated as being most reliable.

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Best brands

Kia sat atop our index. If you’re after a reliable car, start your search with this Korean brand. Its high reliability index score reflected significantly fewer-than-average serious and major faults. Two-thirds of Kia cars were reported as totally fault-free – that’s 10% more than any other brand.

Eighty-five percent of Kia cars in our survey were less than nine years old. Its older cars, dating from before 2009, were only as reliable as the average car of that age. However, its excellent reliability over the past nine years suggests it’s a company making leaps forward with quality.

Our top brand from 2017, Suzuki, hasn’t fallen far down the rankings. Like Kia, most of the Suzuki cars in our survey were nine years old or newer. However, unlike Kia, its older models (pre-2009) held up well.

All but one brand with above-average reliability are Japanese or Korean (the one to buck the trend is Skoda). Of 16 below-average brands, just one is Japanese (Subaru) and one is Korean (SsangYong). If you want a reliable car, choose Asian and avoid European.

Best older cars

If you’re in the market for an older car, Lexus and Honda are the brands to look at. These two outperform all others for cars made before 2009. For the oldest of all cars, Lexus outperformed the index by some margin. Older cars tend to have more faults – but more than a quarter of Lexus owners reported their pre-2004 cars are trouble-free. This is a remarkable result for cars at least 14 years old.

Compare brand reliability & satisfaction

About our survey

Reliability

We wanted to know about reliability problems that happened in the past year. We asked about serious, major and minor faults. Cars with no serious, major or minor faults were reported as trouble-free.

Reliability index
Our reliability index, scored from zero to 10, includes serious and major faults reported in our survey. A score of zero is the baseline for the least reliable cars. To achieve a maximum reliability index of 10, a brand or model would need to have no serious or major faults reported.

Satisfaction

We asked owners how satisfied they were with their car and if they’d recommend this make and model to family and friends. Answers were rated on a 0-10 scale; we consider a rating of 8-10 as “very satisfied” or “very likely to recommend”.

We asked about satisfaction with different aspects: fuel economy, comfort, driving performance, safety features, size and practicality, interior styling and equipment and value for money.

To find out more about our survey, see "How we assess car reliability and satisfaction".

Brand reliability ratings

GUIDE TO THE TABLE Cars is the total number of cars surveyed. We only analyse brands for which we have received more than 30 responses. Index is calculated from serious and major faults reported and accounts for the age of the sample. Trouble-free includes cars with no serious, major or minor faults reported.


Brand[sort] Cars[sort] Index[sort] Serious[sort] Major[sort] Trouble-free[sort]
Kia 286 7.3 5% 16% 67%
Lexus 180 6.3 11% 34% 54%
Suzuki 458 6.1 6% 30% 57%
Honda 968 5.6 8% 37% 50%
Mitsubishi 519 5.6 8% 35% 55%
Hyundai 503 5.4 8% 28% 56%
Mazda 1017 5.4 9% 34% 54%
Toyota 2318 4.8 13% 39% 49%
Skoda 135 4.4 13% 26% 53%
Nissan 872 4.4 12% 40% 48%
Daihatsu 44 4.3 16% 45% 43%
Volvo 85 3.8 15% 36% 55%
Audi 175 3.3 18% 34% 49%
Chrysler/Jeep 57 3.2 14% 40% 40%
SsangYong 41 3.2 12% 39% 44%
BMW 274 3.2 18% 39% 47%
Jaguar 36 3.1 17% 39% 44%
Subaru 518 3.1 17% 43% 44%
Alfa Romeo 35 2.8 23% 34% 54%
Volkswagen 415 2.8 19% 38% 48%
Mercedes-Benz 168 2.5 18% 46% 40%
Peugeot 132 2.4 16% 49% 42%
Other brands 153 2.2 20% 44% 41%
Holden 396 2.1 19% 45% 42%
Land Rover 52 1.8 25% 40% 48%
Renault 41 1.8 22% 46% 41%
Ford 607 1.7 19% 51% 37%
Citroen 35 1 23% 57% 34%


Brand satisfaction ratings

GUIDE TO THE TABLE We only analyse brands for which we have received more than 30 responses. Satisfaction is the percentage of owners scoring “How satisfied are you?” as 8-10 on a 0-10 scale. Would recommend is the percentage of owners scoring “Would you recommend to your friends or family?” as 8-10 on a 0-10 scale.


Brand Overall[sort] Comfort[sort] Driving[sort] Safety[sort] Size[sort] Interior[sort] Fuel[sort] Would recommend[sort]
Lexus 96% 89% 87% 88% 82% 86% 35% 95%
Jaguar 94% 92% 97% 83% 86% 92% 64% 89%
Alfa Romeo 94% 63% 86% 66% 69% 80% 51% 71%
Skoda 91% 83% 89% 91% 97% 87% 87% 93%
Land Rover 90% 83% 88% 77% 88% 85% 52% 79%
Kia 89% 81% 79% 85% 89% 79% 64% 87%
Suzuki 87% 64% 73% 67% 85% 69% 72% 84%
BMW 87% 80% 90% 83% 84% 81% 56% 82%
Volvo 85% 85% 78% 94% 87% 81% 42% 81%
Hyundai 85% 78% 80% 82% 90% 78% 68% 86%
Toyota 83% 63% 69% 60% 82% 60% 56% 88%
Other brands 83% 75% 76% 76% 84% 78% 61% 74%
Mazda 83% 68% 76% 68% 83% 68% 59% 85%
Honda 83% 72% 75% 70% 86% 73% 59% 84%
Audi 83% 84% 93% 86% 85% 83% 57% 77%
Subaru 82% 68% 80% 72% 86% 64% 35% 83%
Mercedes-Benz 82% 84% 88% 89% 88% 86% 52% 78%
Daihatsu 82% 45% 57% 36% 80% 45% 70% 77%
Nissan 81% 69% 72% 60% 81% 65% 56% 77%
Volkswagen 80% 79% 86% 86% 88% 82% 64% 78%
Renault 80% 68% 78% 73% 85% 66% 55% 73%
Mitsubishi 79% 66% 68% 64% 81% 64% 59% 76%
Peugeot 77% 78% 80% 72% 87% 74% 61% 72%
Holden 77% 69% 74% 68% 82% 68% 47% 70%
Citroen 77% 83% 60% 71% 91% 80% 63% 57%
SsangYong 76% 73% 73% 73% 90% 80% 63% 76%
Ford 75% 71% 73% 67% 84% 67% 51% 69%
Chrysler/Jeep 75% 68% 67% 72% 86% 74% 32% 70%


Why people buy certain brands

Brand Comfort[sort] Driving[sort] Safety[sort] Size[sort] Interior[sort] Price[sort] Fuel[sort] Exterior[sort]
Kia 58% 54% 52% 82% 36% 71% 49% 25%
Lexus 81% 62% 59% 52% 56% 27% 14% 32%
Suzuki 35% 49% 36% 87% 19% 73% 67% 25%
Honda 50% 51% 39% 83% 29% 53% 53% 20%
Mitsubishi 50% 45% 41% 87% 23% 75% 54% 16%
Hyundai 54% 47% 52% 84% 32% 57% 56% 23%
Mazda 43% 59% 47% 82% 26% 53% 54% 29%
Toyota 42% 46% 35% 87% 14% 58% 52% 10%
Skoda 39% 60% 53% 87% 32% 61% 77% 25%
Nissan 52% 54% 31% 82% 26% 68% 56% 15%
Daihatsu 32% 41% 18% 91% 11% 93% 86% 11%
Volvo 66% 52% 88% 67% 41% 33% 25% 35%
Audi 58% 85% 54% 61% 45% 25% 33% 37%
Chrysler/Jeep 65% 60% 39% 81% 49% 44% 19% 53%
SsangYong 54% 49% 32% 80% 37% 78% 54% 27%
BMW 60% 85% 54% 61% 39% 25% 35% 33%
Jaguar 78% 94% 39% 33% 81% 19% 22% 81%
Subaru 44% 76% 65% 86% 25% 54% 20% 22%
Alfa Romeo 26% 100% 31% 49% 57% 43% 23% 86%
Volkswagen 51% 75% 60% 78% 40% 37% 53% 25%
Mercedes-Benz 67% 74% 70% 45% 44% 27% 31% 34%
Peugeot 56% 63% 47% 80% 36% 49% 56% 25%
Other brands 44% 67% 35% 74% 42% 49% 39% 55%
Holden 55% 59% 45% 80% 31% 63% 33% 36%
Land Rover 85% 75% 35% 73% 52% 21% 33% 46%
Renault 46% 51% 54% 71% 41% 56% 39% 34%
Ford 56% 66% 44% 82% 32% 58% 36% 26%
Citroen 66% 54% 37% 83% 40% 57% 66% 37%
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