Want To Buy The Highest Quality Car ? Buy A GM Or Ford Pickup (Some Of You Already Knew This)

According to the latest J.D. Powers and Associates “initial quality rankings” release, these pickups were on top of the heap of other cars and trucks.

2010 pickup truck owners reported 95 problems per 100 vehicles, compared with the industry vehicle average of 109 per 100 vehicles, according to a Detroit News article about this study.

GM Avalanche & Sierra trucks tied for the fewest problems at 81 problems / 100 and Ford F-150 was next at 85 / 100.

Word must be getting out because last year GM and Ford together sold about as many pickups a month as Nissan and Toyota together sold in the entire year in the U.S.

It’s looking more and more like this GM and Ford quality trend could be spreading into the car market, too.

What do you think ?

How’bout those new trucks ?

How’bout those new cars ?


Basically these surveys are bunk. Not all “problems” are equal. I’m more concerned with long term durablity than I am with these so-called “initial quality rankings”. And what really is the practical difference between the odds of your new vehicle having .9 problems versus it having 1.2 problems?

“Initial quality” is one thing.

Long-term reliability is another.

I prefer to look at long term reliability data.

I can think of a few GM or Ford vehicles that I would consider if I were purchasing a new vehicle, but a pick up truck would not be among them, no matter how high their JD Power ratings are.

I recently traded a mid 1990s GM car with 140k miles that I bought new. Other than a rusted, leaky gas tank that I replaced myself, I spent nothing on repairs, just routine maintenance.

No, I did not keep it to 300,000 miles. I don’t need to keep a car that long.

If you don’t like new GM vehicles, I am sure that you can find a reason so what is it?

you also have to remember that these surveys count any reported problems.

If my XM radio stops working because XM screwed up and shut off my radio, and I go to the dealership about it, guess what? It goes down as a reported problem.

I’m far less concerned about little niggling problems that crop up while the vehicle is under warranty. I can take it to the dealership, get a free loaner car, and they’ll even give me a free car wash after they fix whatever went wrong.

I’m much more concerned about the big expensive stuff that always waits until after the warranty is expired to break. Come back to me in 10 years, and if you can show me that the GM/Ford trucks outdid the others in reliability, I’ll be much more interested.

For now, all we can go on is past history of reliability, and GM especially has a terrible record. So bad, in fact, that twice now they have run advertising campaigns that basically said “we know we built crap since the 80’s, but please give us another chance.”

I’ll give them another chance when they can prove over time that they are building better vehicles. They can’t do that until the current “reliable” fleet has aged to the point where actual reliability statistics can be generated.

Long term reliability, huh? I have a 1998 Chevy S-10, Extended Cab, 4WD, 4.3L V-6. Mileage is 160,000+. Problems? Replaced alternator and a/c compressor (both under warranty), emergency brake cables, ball joints, on third battery and third set of tires. NEVER any engine problems. Doesn’t burn any oil. No appreciable compression loss. No rust. I keep up with the GM maintenance schedule and use only Mobil 1 oil and filters and a K&N air cleaner. I’d say that pretty much qualifies for long term reliability, but then again, she’s just gettin’ broke in…

JD Powers??? You’re kidding…Right???

They are about as reliable as Motor Trend??

It’s looking more and more like this GM and Ford quality trend could be spreading into the car market, too.

I’ve been patiently waiting for it…still don’t see it.

I wonder if part of it is that pickup truck people are hardy folks who might just fix little problems themselves instead of taking it into the dealership.

JD Powers’ results actually track Consumer Reports’ results pretty darn closely. People ridiculed them years ago when their initial quality results pointed out Ford matching up well against Honda and Toyota… they said it was just “initial quality”. Then when their dependability survey came out and showed the same thing down the road, people said it was “only 3 years, not 8-10+ years”, or “they’re just Ford buy the awards”.

Then when Consumer Reports started showing the same thing (statistically insignificant differences), people still tried to downplay it… Only recently have people noticed that CR is saying that their reliability is “on par” with Honda and Toyota.

That was true back when pickups were bought by people who need pickups. But these days people buy pickups because they’re “rugged” and “manly,” whatever that means. There are 5 parked close to my cars in my apartment’s garage, and I live in an urban area where no pickups are required.

I really don’t follow either one. I use them as a source…but I don’t rely completely on them. Consumer reports and JD powers don’t track anything past 5 years or so. They don’t show the reliability of a vehicle after 150k miles let alone 200k or 300k miles. My 05 4runner now has 165k miles…Just over half way there…

The other thing you have to worry about…

Lets say for the sake of argument that GM and Ford are now building vehicles equal to in quality as Honda or Toyota. What is happening right now is they are both hurting and are doing everything they can to win back customers. What’s going to happen when the economy turns around…then what??? Based on their past track record…reliability will take a back seat to PROFIT and huge undeserved bonuses. GM has been forced to change the way they give out bonuses. They want complete control again…when they become profitable again…I see nothing stopping them from continuing their old ways…With a bonus/profit that is great to the VP’s and higher whom have made MILLIONS over the years…but not good for the consumer who buys one of their vehicles.

that V6 is pretty robust. If I’m not mistaken, GM basically took their 350ci V8 and just cut off 2 cylinders

of the 2, I’d pick Ford