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Subaru Scores Below Average Again In New J.D. Power Dependability Study

How reliable are Subaru vehicles? A new study from J.D. Power says the Subaru brand scores below the industry average. But there's a silver lining.

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Are Subaru vehicles like the 2024 Subaru Forester, Crosstrek, Outback, and other new models reliable? The J.D. Power 2024 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study says the Subaru brand is still below the industry average. 

I cover the J.D. Power U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study every year, and Subaru vehicles like the Forester, Outback, Crosstrek, Ascent, and other all-wheel-drive models have previously scored poorly. This makes them score below the industry average for eight consecutive years.

2024 Subaru Forester grille and badge

How does J.D. Power score the vehicles?

The 2024 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study is based on responses from 30,595 original owners of 2021 model-year vehicles after three years of ownership. The study was fielded from August through November 2023.

The study examines how 2021 model-year vehicles perform across nine major categories: climate, driving assistance, driving experience, exterior, features/controls/displays, infotainment, interior, powertrain, and seats.

2024 Subaru Outback on a dirt road

Power says, "The industry average has increased four problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) year over year to 190 PP100 from 2023. The rate at which issues have increased between 90 days and three years of ownership has increased to 17%, up five percentage points from 12% in 2023.

Subaru scores 198 problems per 100 vehicles PP/100, while the industry average among all car brands is 190/100. 

2024 Subaru Crosstrek Wilderness in front of a barn

There's a silver lining in this year's study.

Last year, Subaru scored 214 problems per 100 vehicles. Subaru improved 16 points for the 2023 J.D. Power study. While the industry average increased by four problems per 100 vehicles, Subaru vehicle dependability has improved. 

The top five automakers in the 2024 study

Lexus (PP/135), Toyota (147/100), Buick (PP/149), Chevrolet (PP/174), and Mini (174/100) are the top five automakers in dependability, according to J.D. Power.

Subaru ranks 14th among all car brands and scores 8th best among mainstream car brands in this year's study. 

MY TAKE

Why does Subaru score well below the industry average in this study? Customer’s most significant complaint with their vehicles continues to be with Subaru's Starlink infotainment system.

Should customers be concerned?

Remember that the J.D. Power information is data regarding the new cars people bought in 2021. The study examines how three-year-old vehicles perform regarding quality, component replacement, and appeal. Subaru has made significant improvements, which is reflected in its 16-point improvement. 

Thanks for reading, everyone. I hope you enjoyed the Subaru Dependability story. See you tomorrow for my latest Subaru Report.

 

 

For additional articles related to new Subaru models, here are a few of my top stories you may enjoy. 

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Watch ALL NEW… BUT BETTER? 2024 Subaru Crosstrek review

I am Denis Flierl, a 12-year Torque News senior writer with 20+ years of Subaru and automotive journalism experience. I enjoy bringing you, the Subaru fans and customers, the most up-to-date Subaru news, reviews, and new model information. You'll find the latest Subaru stories on the Subaru page. Follow me on my The Dirty Subaru website, Dirty Subaru blogSubaruReportAll Subaru, WRXSTI, @DenisFlierlFacebook, and Instagram.

I’ve got you covered! - I cover all Subaru all the time - It’s called the “Subaru Report.” Check back daily for my expert Subaru analysis!

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photo credit: Subaru USA

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Comments

NMK (not verified)    February 11, 2024 - 3:35AM

Old folks who cant figure out an infotainment system ruin scores for many manufacturers. There is nothing "wrong" with the vehicle most of the time. They just dont know how to use modern features properly. Calling a car "less dependable than average" due to something so silly is absurd.

Ciro Matrecano (not verified)    February 11, 2024 - 12:02PM

I am on my 7th Subaru since 1996.
It is the most reliable car through the 4 seasons.
Pulls right out of snow with great traction and torque. I live in Pennsylvania.
In Spring through Fall l travel through the Adirondacks a lot.
My Outback takes me off road where most cars can’t go.
In closing I just to say this; How many Subarus have you ever seen on side of the road in a breakdown situations?