Lexus sits atop the J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) once more this year, for the 14th year in a row.
The upscale Toyota brand tops Mercury, Cadillac, Toyota, and Acura, which rounded out the top five among automakers showing the fewest problems per 100 vehicles studied after the first three years of ownership.
Power reports that Lexus owners lodged 120 problems per 100 vehicles after three years of ownership. In its study of 2005 model-year vehicles, Power found that overall, car owners log 75 percent more problems in the third year of ownership than in the first 90 days. The kinds of problems that crop up most often? Wind noise, noisy brakes, problems with the instruments or dash, window fogging, and pulling under acceleration.
Among individual car lines, Lexus put six vehicles atop the survey: its ES 330, GX 470, IS 300, LS 430, LX 470, and SC 430 topped the charts, while the Highlander, Prius, RAV4, Sequoia, and Tundra led their segments.
Ford and Honda took top spots with the Crown Victoria and Ranger, and Element and S2000, respectively, while Buick, Chevrolet, Hyundai, Mazda, and Mercury each scored highest in one vehicle segment. Saab improved the most in the survey but still ranks below average.