Mass Market Cars Outperform Premium, EVs Struggle in J.D. Power Quality Study

Advanced technology in luxury and electrified vehicles are causing headaches for owners, the study found.


Mass market vehicles outshone premium brands in the latest J.D. Power 2024 U.S. Initial Quality Study, which incorporates franchise dealership repair visits for the first time. The study revealed mass market brands, with an average of 181 problems per 100 vehicles (PP100), outperform the industry average of 195 PP100, while premium brands lag behind with an average of 232 PP100.

"It is not surprising that the introduction of new technology has challenged manufacturers to maintain vehicle quality," said Frank Hanley, senior director of auto benchmarking at J.D. Power. "However, the industry can take solace in the fact that some problem areas such as voice recognition and parking cameras are seen as less problematic now than they were a year ago."

The study also highlights the challenges faced by battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), which require more repairs than their gas-powered counterparts. BEVs have an average of 266 PP100, significantly higher than the 180 PP100 for gas-powered vehicles.

"Owners of cutting edge, tech-filled BEVs and PHEVs are experiencing problems that are of a severity level high enough for them to take their new vehicle into the dealership at a rate three times higher than that of gas-powered vehicle owners," Hanley added.

False Warnings, Unpleasant Interior Smells

Key findings from the study include rising frustration with false warnings from rear seat reminder technology and advanced driver assistance systems, persistent problems with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, and an increase in unpleasant interior smells across nearly all brands.

The 2024 U.S. Initial Quality Study, now in its 38th year, surveyed 99,144 purchasers and lessees of new 2024 model-year vehicles. For the first time, the study incorporated repair visit data, allowing for a more comprehensive analysis of vehicle quality.

Highest-Ranking Brands and Models

Ram emerged as the highest-ranking brand overall with a score of 149 PP100, followed by Chevrolet and Hyundai among mass market brands. Porsche topped the premium brand category with 172 PP100, with Lexus and Genesis following closely behind.

Toyota Motor Corporation's Takaoka 2 plant in Japan received the Platinum Plant Quality Award, while Honda's Alliston 2 plant in Canada and Toyota's Cambridge South plant in Canada shared the Gold Plant Quality Award for North/South America. BMW's plant in Born, Netherlands, received the Gold Plant Quality Award for Europe and Africa.

The enhanced methodology and expanded data sources of this year's study provide automakers with valuable insights to identify and address potential issues more effectively. For more information about the U.S. Initial Quality Study, visit J.D. Power's website.

AkzoNobel Beta web graphic v2 600px

Shop & Product Showcase