GM Tops J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey for First Time

By Matthew Askari | June 19, 2013
J.D. Power released its Initial Quality Survey (IQS) today, finding that the majority of problems customers faced were not on account of defects of faulty manufacturing. The IQS indicated that the issues customers experienced within the first 90 days of ownership had to do with the design of certain features, rather than defects. "Automakers are investing billions of dollars into designing and building vehicles and adding technologies that consumers desire and demand, but the risk is that the vehicle design, or the technology within the vehicle, in some cases may not meet customer needs," said David Sargent, vice president of gloabal automotive at J.D. Power. Because design problems—such as an unintuitive media interface—are not the result of a breakdown or malfunction, new owners only looked to resolve these issues nine percent of the time in the first 90 days. If there was an issue that affected the car's performance or ability to operate, owners were more likely to take it to dealers, and were more likely to have the issue resolved.
J.D. Power also ranked automakers by problems per 100 vehicles, with Porsche coming out on top with the fewest at 80 problems per 100 cars. The industry average is 113. GMC came in second with 90, Lexus came in third with 94, and Infiniti and Chevrolet rounded out the top 5 with scores of 95 and 97. Several automakers had two models receive honors, including: the Honda Civic and CR-V; the Kia Soul and Sportage; the Mazda2 and Mazda MX-5 Miata; and Porsche for the Boxster and 911.
There were 26 model-level segments as well, with Chevrolet earning the most awards with 5, the most in the company's history. The Chevrolet Camaro, Impala, Silverado HD and Tahoe, and Avalanche all received awards. The Lexus LS ranks best in the Large Premium Car segment with a score of 59 problems per 100 vehicles, the lowest of all models in the study.
Others cars receiving segment awards included the Acura TL; Buick Encore; Cadillac Escalade; Chrysler Town and Country; Hyundai Genesis Sedan; Ford Mustang; GMC Sierra; Infiniti FX; Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class; Nissan Murano; Smart ForTwo; and Toyota Camry.
The 2013 J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey was based on responses from over 83,000 purchasers and lessees of new 2013 model-year cars and trucks after 90 days of ownership. Source: J.D. Power