@Bing I remember reading Consumer Reports back in the early 1950s. Used cars were rated in categories “A”, “B”, and. “C” for repair records. If a repair had been made, the specific vehicle could be considered in a higher category. For example, the 1948 Studebaker, with its planar suspension, had wheel alignment as a trouble spot. If the repair had been made, the Studebaker was considered to be in the next higher category.
I have had a subscription to Consumer Reports since 1965. It seems to me that the products, including vehicles, tend to be the high end models that the more affluent consumers purchase. One example is kitchen sink faucets. We had to replace our kitchen sink faucet. The models CR rated were in the $150 and up price range. I went to Lowes and bought a Delta faucet for around $75. The parts kits for Delta faucets are available many places and are easy to install.
I may have to buy a push lawnmower in the not too distant future. One of my mowers I purchased in 1988 and the other in 1992. I am not sure the repair record of such a mower means a whole lot. I am on the building maintenance committee for the small church I attend. The woman who cleans our church “hot rods” the vacuum cleaner. It is cheaper for us to go to Big Lots and buy a $50-$75 factory reconditioned special and replace it every three or four years than buy some really expensive high rated machine.
Back in 2006, I bought a 2006 Chevrolet Uplander that was a “program car”, whatever that means. The Uplander had about 14,000 miles on the odometer and I paid somewhere around $16,000. It had two repairs under warranty: 1) fuel gauge; 2) intermediate steering shaft. My son now has the Uplander and it has gone about 250,000 miles with no major repairs. Consumer Reports indicated a below average repair record for the Uplander, but that hasn’t been our experience. In fact, the repair and maintenance cost on the Uplander was less for the first 100,000 miles than the 2011 Sienna I purchased new and cost almost twice as much. Now I have no idea what GM may have repaired on the Uplander in the first 14,000 miles when it was a “program car”.