EVs rank poorly in US Consumer Reports survey

American electric vehicle maker Tesla climbed four spots to rank 19th out of 24 brands in latest poll by Consumer Reports. PHOTO: REUTERS

UNITED STATES – Electric vehicles (EVs) and full-sized pickup trucks were the two most problematic categories in terms of reliability, Consumer Reports magazine’s annual reliability survey showed on Tuesday, as Asian brands once again dominated overall rankings.

Hybrid vehicles and mid-sized or large sedans were among the most reliable, according to the survey.

The American magazine’s annual survey of new vehicle reliability predicts which cars will give owners fewer or more problems than their competitors, based on data collected. Its scorecard is influential among consumers and industry executives.

Tesla’s EVs, on which Consumer Reports received the most data from owners, continue to face issues with body hardware, steering/suspension, paint and trim, and climate system, but their electric powertrains have very few problems, according to the survey.

However, Tesla improved its ranking by four places to No. 19 this year, with Mercedes-Benz slipping five slots to rank the least reliable among all brands, the survey showed.

EV owners from other manufacturers reported charging and battery problems, as well as electric drive motor issues. Of the 11 EV models on which Consumer Reports has sufficient data, only four have average or “better predicted reliability”.

The top-ranked brands in the survey were Toyota and Lexus, and seven of the 10 best-scoring brands were from Japan and South Korea.

Among brands owned by Detroit carmakers, Ford Motor’s Lincoln was the only one in the top 10, securing 10th place.

All of General Motors’ brands dropped in Consumer Reports’ rankings, with Buick ranked highest at 11th. Among Stellantis’ brands, Ram ranked highest at 16th.

Amid rising vehicle prices, 94 per cent of prospective automobile buyers consider reliability to be “extremely” or “very” important, the survey showed.

Although EVs and full-sized pickup trucks enjoy the hottest demand in the market, they are the “most problematic”, the non-profit organisation that evaluates products and services said.

EV owners from other manufacturers reported charging and battery problems, as well as electric drive motor issues. PHOTO: AFP

The report flagged a growing interest in hybrid vehicles, with 36 per cent of prospective buyers considering one for their next car or truck purchase.

Tesla, the world’s most valuable carmaker, climbed by four spots and was ranked 19th out of the 24 brands. The EV leader continues to have issues with body hardware, steering/suspension, paint and trim, and climate system on its models, the report said.

In October, the Elon Musk-helmed company said it expected to miss its vehicle delivery target this year and cited logistics challenges. REUTERS

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