Subaru Scores Zero Vehicles in Newest J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study
The Subaru brand inches up in the latest J.D. Power Dependability Study, but they still score zero vehicles in individual segments. Last year, Subaru scored a total VDS ranking of 166 (Problems per 100 Vehicles) in the 2016 study, and in 2017, the Japanese automaker ranks 164 PP100 which is still below the industry average of 156. And no Subaru vehicles were in the top three models in their individual segments.
J.D. Power Ratings
The J.D. Power ratings examines problems experienced during the past 12 months by original owners of 2014 model-year vehicles. Overall dependability is determined by the number of problems experienced per 100 vehicles, with a lower score reflecting higher quality. The study covers 177 specific problems grouped into eight major vehicle categories.
Subaru has excellent brand loyalty and they’ve been rated with the highest residual values in the industry which actually is contrary to the J.D. Power findings about the brand. Subaru’s niche all-wheel-drive vehicles continue to sell at a hot pace around the globe, and this study hasn’t affected consumer’s decisions to buy the new Outback, Forester and Crosstrek models.
Technology is the culprit
Technology is likely the reason for Subaru’s lower than average industry rankings. The study says “Continuing increases in technology-related problems industry-wide have contributed to dependability worsening for a second consecutive year.” The audio/communication/entertainment/navigation category is the most problematic area, accounting for 22 percent of all problems reported according to J.D. Power. The problems most reported by owners are Bluetooth pairing/connectivity and built-in voice recognition misinterpreting commands.
While Subaru is lower than average in this study, they scored better than their large Japanese competitors Mazda (166 PP100), Acura (167 PP100) and Nissan (170 PP100). While Lexus and Porsche rank the highest in the J.D.Power study among all nameplates, these luxury brands can cost tens of thousands more than the typical Subaru vehicle. More on Page 2.
The Subaru brand inches up in the latest J.D. Power Dependability Study and is making progress. This annual study hasn’t hurt sales of the popular 2017 Outback wagon, Forester SUV and Crosstrek crossover all-wheel-drive vehicles. The Subaru brand is doing well in brand loyalty, and they’ve been rated with the highest residual values in the industry.
Photo credit: Subaru