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Consumer Reports Releases Reliability Rankings

October 29, 2013

2014 Subaru Forester 2.5i photo courtesy of Subaru.
2014 Subaru Forester 2.5i photo courtesy of Subaru.

The redesigned 2014 Subaru Forester compact SUV captured the top slot in the 2013 Consumer Reports Annual Auto Reliability rankings released Monday.

The Forester performed will in testing, including racking up "excellent crash test scores." The vehicle is "a reliability champ," according to Consumer Reports.

On the flip side, the lowest rating went to the Ford C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid with the regular C-Max Hybrid "not faring much better," according to the publication. Below-average ratings also went to the V-6 Honda Accord and redesigned Nissan Altima, which was listed last among mid-sized cars. Consumer Reports also dropped the Toyota Camry from its reccommended list.

Fleet managers looking to add electric or hybrid vehicles to their fleets will note high reliability ratings for the Toyota Prius, Lexus ES 300h, Toyota Prius C, and Honda CR-Z hybrids. The pure-electric Nissan Leaf was also a top pick.

The publication annually ranks auto brands by reliability based on a range of tests. Domestic brands were led by General Motors with GMC, Buick, and Chevrolet ranking higher than brands from Chrysler and Ford. GMC claimed the ninth spot on the list. All Buicks except the V-6 LaCrosse were listed as average or better. The Camaro and Cruze were the only Chevrolet models listed as below average.

Chrysler models rose five spots from last year's rankings to 18th on the list, followed by Ram at 19th, Jeep at 23rd, and Dodge at 24th.

Ford and Lincoln fell toward the bottom of the list with only the BMW Mini faring worse. These brands were "hampered primarily by the MyTouch infotainment systems, and some problems with the V-6 EcoBoost" engine, according to the report. The publication found "problems with components associated with those heavily marketed engines, rather than the engines themselves."

The top-selling Ford F-150 pickup with the 3.7L V-6 was listed as above average.

Volkswagen's Audi was the standout among European brands; Audi claimed the top slot in the survey. Three Audis, including the A6 2.0T sedan and Q7 SUV, have "much better than average" reliability. Volvo jumped 13 places to seventh.

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