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Used Hyundai Quality Called into Question?

Contrast the news that Hyundai is rocking the 2014 J.D. Power Initial Quality Awards against the fact that one website ranks it as the 8th least reliable brand on the market. Does that mean you should sell your Hyundai while you still can?

As TorqueNews reported, 3 Hyundais are tops in initial quality: the 2014 Genesis, 2014 Elantra and 2014 Accent. Hyundai ranked fourth overall in initial quality, climbing six spots from last year, and was the highest-ranked non-premium brand. In total, Hyundai had six vehicles in the Top Three positions in their segments, including two second-place finishes for Santa Fe and Sonata and a third-place finish for Equus.

Contrast that against a report at on the 10 least reliable used car brands. It quotes a Mojo Motors study that says, "Like Buick and Kia, two brands that also make this list, stick to their newer models from 2010 and onward for something that holds its value a little longer." Mojo Motors specifically calls out the Hyundai Azera as the model to avoid (without going into specifics). Mojo Motors says the average Hyundai can be driven 169,123 miles until it is worthless.

According to the site, "We used the same analysis of 500,000+ cars model years 1995 to 2014, listed for sale on Mojo Motors to determine the average selling price depending on a vehicle’s mileage," said Michael Milstein, Business Intelligence Manager at Mojo Motors. "Using a linear regression model, we were able to calculate the dollars of value lost as mileage increased and ultimately, the number of theoretical miles where a car lost all value. We were surprised to find many top luxury brands in this list – but we have our theories."

Yet contrast that against a 2011 report by CarMD on the top 100 used cars of 2011. According to the 2011 CarMD Vehicle Health Index, Hyundai is the no. 2 ranked manufacturer in the U.S., based on a ranking derived from the fewest percentage of 'check engine' light-related related problems and lowest average repair cost.

What does this tell you? Maybe these rankings should be taken with a grain of salt. Even Mojo Motors admits, "Please note that while this data is a great way to understand how vehicle prices correlate to reliability, no study of used car reliability and its value is perfect. This is a make-specific study, not a breakdown of models, trims or years."

Also, keep in mind that Mojo Motors says the miles is north of 161,000. That refers to a 2003 model year Hyundai. Own one of those? You might have a vehicle with no value but then again few 11-year-old models have much value in the economy market.


Miles (not verified)    June 19, 2014 - 6:50PM

I'm not sure what J.D. Power's rankings actually measure. "Initial quality" apparently does not equate with "reliability" (long term durability). It is impossible to accurately predict the long term durability of a 2014 automobile in 2014.