The New Year is here, and it is only fitting that we look at yet another year that has passed us. But in line with our theme, we will look back at 2014 in terms of cars. Specifically, we are going to look at the top 10 car brands of the past year. Special emphasis will be given to ‘car reliability ratings’ when it comes to determining which brands are considered most reliable by vehicle owners. Also note that the compilation is in no specific order. Rather, these results have been collated from a couple of sources that represent the auto community. Read on to see our Top 10 Car Brands 2014 List.
What Determines Vehicle Brand Reliability?
Before moving on, it is first necessary to establish what car reliability actually means. Reliability has now become a buzz word in the vehicle industry, a label that all manufacturers attach with their models. While reliability mostly serves a marketing purpose (convincing customers to buy this model over that one), but over the years, reliability has become a benchmark of quality and now defines what it means to be a vehicle owner.
This has resulted in the creation of what are known as car ‘Reliability Ratings’, which basically establish 2 things:
- How well a vehicle pairs up with its competing models
- How likely is the vehicle to bother the owner with repairs and maintenance
Of course, both these factors directly affect how satisfied a buyer will be with the vehicle. However, reliability ratings can also influence the resale value. So how is reliability determined?
There is no uniform technique, but the basic method is to directly ask vehicle owners to provide their feedback. Of course, the accuracy of the ratings depends on the sample, i.e. the more vehicle owners provide information, the better.
One of the most credible sources of auto brands reliability ratings is ConsumerReports.org. Consumer Reports can provide you accurate insights on what car manufacturers are reliable because they regularly publish their annual surveys based on information provided by their 800+ million subscribers. Depending on whether you want to buy a new or used vehicle, they provide a Predicted Reliability Rating and Used Car Verdict.
Consumer Report ratings are faced on a variety of factors, such as:
- Quality (leader: Toyota)
- Safety (leader: Volvo)
- Performance (leader: Chevrolet)
- Value (leader: Toyota)
- Fuel economy(leader: Toyota)
- Design (leader: BMW)
- Technology and innovation (leader: Tesla)
These are the factors that subscribers think are the most important when buying a new vehicle.
ConsumerReports.org is not the only website/magazine that tests cars for reliability and provides reports on the best car makes by year. Here are some other sources you can check out for information on the best cars that meet your budget and preferences:
- D. Power, a market research company, uses the ‘Initial Quality Survey’ (IQS) test that helps new buyers measure the quality of the vehicle in the first 3 months based on 60,000 responses
- Mojo Motors developed an algorithm to determine brand loyalty. The formula used a linear regression model to find out how much mileage a vehicle could compile before losing all value.
- Edmunds, a leading car website also publishes car reliability ratings
- MSN Autos is also a great website for car reliability ratings. However, they take an alternate approach, i.e. providing input from technicians on the common problems and repair issues of particular models
So, based on this wide variety of data, here are the 10 most trusted car brands that buyers voted for the past year:
Top Car Brands For 2014
The Toyota Motor Corporation is not only the largest automobile producer in the world for the past 3 years, but is also the leading brand today. Toyota cars average 210,705 miles on average, which is why it remains the leading choice for the majority of car buyers around the world.
Honda is also one of the most popular automakers in the world, and last year too it remained a consumer favorite as it offers long-lasting value. In any consumer survey, you will find Honda hovering at the top when it comes to value and fuel economy. That is why models like Accord and Civic are top choices for car buyers that want good value on their money.
With its F-150 truck line, Ford has remained a customer favorite in America over the decades. Recently, it has also stepped up its game with innovations in style on its previous vehicles like Focus, while also dishing out model additions like the Fusion.
BMW is synonymous with excellence in car manufacturing. With its research and development centers in different countries of the world, the company places special emphasis on design and style, and this is a leading factor that drives car purchases. And while design is a subjective measure, it is seen as a symbol of prestige.
General Motors in general and Chevrolet in particular has also seen a surge in its reputation for reliability in the past couple of decades. The Silverado continues to be the company’s signature, while new vehicles like Sonic and Cruze have been designed with emphasis on practicality and economical sensibility.
With 80 years in the business, Nissan has continued on with its reputation for building sporty, economical, and reliable cars and SUVs. The company continues to improve models like Sentra and Altima, and the average Nissan vehicle easily reaches 195,500 miles before reaching zero value.
A definite addition in any compilation of reliable companies. In fact, the company has made reliability its USP as research shows that 95 percent of all Subaru models sold in the past decade are still on the road! Not bad.
Tesla is rapidly moving up the ranks in terms of reliable vehicles, with special emphasis on technology and innovation. Its Model S Sedan, for example, Model S sedan comes with a potential 225-plus-mile electric-only range, gigantic touch screen control interface, motorized door handles, and available third-row seat.
Starting off with economical cars and trucks, Mazda expanded into the crossover and SUV market. The cars are not only fuel efficient, but have long lifespans as well.
Finally we have the Dodge brand with its new lineup of Dart and the revamped Charge. It can reach almost 198, 266 miles before reaching zero value, which is higher than many car makes around.
Hope our compilation of the Top 10 Car Brands 2014 List helps you make the right choice on what car brand you should buy from in 2015.