• Jan 5, 2010
Cadillac CTS – Click above for high-res image gallery

The Cadillac CTS sedan outscored its competition from Audi, Acura, Mercedes-Benz and Lincoln in a Consumer Reports competition of luxury sedans over $50,000. The CTS was given an "Excellent" overall road test score of 84, four points better than the closest competitor. CR says that the CTS gives up next-to-nothing to its overseas competition, adding "the ride is supple and controlled and handling is agile and sporty." The Cadillac's 3.6-liter V6 and six-speed automatic were also given kudos for punchy acceleration and smooth shifting.

The Acura RL came in second with a "Very Good" road test score of 80. The Acura was given high marks for technology but was marked down for a less than sporty ride and a less than best-in-class rear seat. The Mercedes E350 and Audi A6 3.0T followed with "Very Good" scores of 79. Interestingly, CR says the E350 was marked down because it didn't handle as well as the last generation E-Class, adding "handling is still capable, but not exceptional, and the ride isn't as absorbent as before." The A6 is given generally high marks all around including interior, ride and handling, but its performance evidently wasn't enough to elevate it to the head of the class. The Lincoln MKS Ecoboost brought up the rear of the group with a "Very Good" score of 75. CR says the MKS has an "ordinary" driving experience, but the testers gave it good marks for a well-resolved interior.

As a bonus, CR engineers also tested the new Lexus HS250h. The dedicated luxury hybrid was given an "Excellent" score of 83 – just above that of the Toyota Prius – though the publication dings the Lexus because it "doesn't have the refinement, quietness, and ride comfort associated with the Lexus brand." CR says the HS250h makes up for these shortcomings, though, with terrific real world fuel economy – they achieved an average 31 miles per gallon during its testing.

Though the CTS took top honors in Consumer Reports' road test, the quality-driven publication still does not recommend the vehicle due to reliability issues. Only the Acura was given a "Recommended" nod, though the A6 and the MKS contain engines that are too new to receive a recommendation. The luxury test appears in the February issue of the magazine. Hit the jump to read over the official press release.





PRESS RELEASE:

CADILLAC CTS TOPS CONSUMER REPORTS' TESTS
OF LUXURY SEDANS BUT RELIABILITY REMAINS AN ISSUE
CTS outpoints Acura RL, Mercedes-Benz E-350, Audi A6, and Lincoln MKS

YONKERS, NY - The Cadillac CTS posted an "Excellent" overall score and outpointed competitors from Acura, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and Lincoln in Consumer Reports' testing of five luxury sedans for the February 2010 issue.

The CTS earned an "Excellent" overall road test score of 84, outdistancing freshened versions of the Acura RL, which earned a "Very Good" score with 80 points, the redesigned Mercedes-Benz E350 and freshened Audi A6 and which both earned "Very Good" scores of 79 points, and the Lincoln MKS which earned a "Very Good" road test score of 75 points. The CTS trails only the Infiniti M35 among all luxury sedans in the category that CR has tested, but below-average reliability prevents CR from recommending it.

"With excellent driving dynamics, a smooth and punchy drivetrain and a well-furnished interior, the CTS outscores some of the best imported luxury sports sedans," said David Champion, senior director of Consumer Reports' Auto Test Center in East Haddam, Connecticut. The CTS trails only the Infiniti M35 among the 13 luxury sedans that have been rated by CR.

The new E350 has a slightly roomier interior and retains the same high quality materials and fit and finish of the previous E-class, but it doesn't quite live up to its predecessor's great ride and handling. The Audi A6, now five years old, still holds its own against even the newest luxury sedans. The Acura RL has a smooth and refined powertrain, but it's not the most exciting sedan to drive. The Lincoln MKS came with the uplevel EcoBoost turbocharged engine, which is bundled with AWD.

In an Auto Test Extra, Consumer Reports also tested the Lexus HS 250h, a new hybrid sedan that received an "Excellent" road test score of 83, slightly higher than the Prius.

Prices for the luxury sedans as tested ranged from $50,660 for the Acura to $55,245 for the Mercedes-Benz. Only the Acura is recommended. The Mercedes-Benz is too new to have reliability data. Because CR tested the Audi A6 3.0T and MKS Ecoboost with newly introduced engines, CR cannot predict their reliability. CR only Recommends vehicles that have performed well in its tests, have at least average predicted reliability based on CR's Annual Auto Survey of its more than seven million print and Web subscribers, and performed at least adequately if crash-tested or included in a government rollover test.

Full tests and ratings of the luxury sedans test group and the Lexus HS 250h appear in the February issue of Consumer Reports, which goes on sale January 5. The reports are also available to subscribers of www.ConsumerReports.org. Updated daily, ConsumerReports.org is the go-to site for the latest auto reviews, product news, blogs on breaking news and car buying information.

The CTS gives up virtually nothing to the premium European cars tested in terms of refinement, powertrain, ride, or handling. The ride is supple and controlled and handling is agile and sporty. The Cadillac CTS Premium RWD ($50,995, Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price as tested), is powered by a 304-hp, 3.6-liter 6-cylinder engine that delivers lively performance and gets 19 mpg overall in CR's own fuel economy tests. The six-speed automatic transmission shifts responsively. Braking is excellent. The interior is plush, with well-fitted padded panels and nice touches of wood and chrome. It has a moderately-sized trunk.

The Acura RL is a pleasant and refined car, but the driving experience isn't special enough to justify its $50,000 price tag. The car is full of electronic conveniences, but the ride and backseat are not as comfortable as those found in competing vehicles. Handling is sound, but less sporty than most of its competitors. The Acura RL AWD ($50,660 MSRP as tested), is powered by a 300-hp, 3.7-liter V6 engine that is smooth and slick and delivers 19 mpg overall on premium gasoline. The five-speed automatic transmission is very smooth and responsive. Braking is very good. The RL's high-quality interior has impeccable fit and finish. For a car in this class, the RL's trunk is modest.

The redesigned E350 doesn't ride as comfortably or handle as well as its predecessor. Handling is still capable, but not exceptional, and the ride isn't as absorbent as before, but still the E350 is quick and quiet, solid, comfortable, and luxurious. The Mercedes-Benz E350 RWD, ($55,245 MSRP as tested), is powered by a 268-hp, 3.5-liter V6 engine that delivers smooth and strong performance and 19 mpg overall on premium fuel. The seven-speed automatic transmission usually shifts smoothly. Braking is very good. The interior is nicely finished with padded panels and high-quality materials. The trunk is good-sized.

Audi freshened the A6 with a new, supercharged engine that improves performance while retaining decent fuel economy. Handling remains responsive and secure, the seats are very comfortable, and the interior is nicely finished. The A6 Premium 3.0T Quattro AWD, $53,075 MSRP as tested), is powered by a 300-hp, 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine that delivers strong acceleration and 20 mpg overall on premium fuel. The six-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly. Braking is very good. The rich interior is trimmed with high-quality materials and panels are tight- fitting. Trunk space is good.

The MKS, which is based on the Ford Taurus, doesn't do much to set itself apart for its higher price. It has many amenities and well-finished interior but the driving experience is ordinary. The Lincoln MKS Ecoboost AWD, ($52,770 MSRP as tested,) is powered by a 355-hp, 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 engine that provides strong performance and gets 18 mpg overall. The six-speed automatic transmission shifts quickly and smoothly. Braking is very good. The inviting interior has thickly padded and stitched panels and nicely detailed front perforated-leather seats. The MKS has a good-sized trunk, but its opening is very short.

Though pleasant overall, the HS 250h doesn't have the refinement, quietness, and ride comfort associated with the Lexus brand. The cabin is narrow and handling is unexciting. The Lexus HS 250h Premium Hybrid ($38,939 MSRP as tested), is powered by a 187-hp 2.4-liter 4 cylinder hybrid electric/gasoline engine that delivers adequate performance and excellent fuel economy at 31 mpg overall. It can drive up to 26 mph on electric power alone. The CVT transmission works very smoothly. Braking is very good. The interior trim uses high-grade materials. The trunk is modest.

With more than 7 million print and online subscribers, Consumer Reports is one of the most trusted sources for information and advice on consumer products and services. It conducts the most comprehensive auto-test program of any U.S. publication or Web site and owns and operates a 327-acre Auto Test Center in Connecticut. The organization's auto experts have decades of experience in driving, testing, and reporting on cars. To subscribe, consumers can call 1-800-234-1645 or visit www.ConsumerReports.org.



I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 80 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      The only reason the Cadillac did not get a recommendation is because it wasn't made by Toyota or Honda.

      I remember years ago my relatives purchase a Honda Accord just because it has high ratings by CR. Meanwhile we had an Olds Calais (which got one of lowest ratings), it was much more reliable than the Honda.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Having read CR for years (and even participated in their automotive surveys), I have to say that they have had a consistent and utterly ill informed bias against all non-Japanese auto makers.

      I still recall a test where a Toyota and, as I recall, a Geo were in the same test. The Geo scored better than the Toyota, but CR noted that "the Geo is, like other Chevrolets, likely to have much worse than average reliability".

      In my mind, that's like printing a disclaimer that says "we don't know anything about cars".

      I totally trust them on washers and garbage bags, but they don't know jack about cars.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I've always maintained that no matter how good GM makes cars, Consumer Reports will never recommend it over a Toyota product. Consumer Report even recommends Toyota cars without even checking them out! Consumer Reports is not the right organization to find the true ratings of cars!! Check the link below. All these cars were recommended by CR but turned out to be lemons.

      http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/toyota_engine.html
      • 5 Years Ago
      Correction: Except for the LS460L, which is 25 grand more expensive.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Lincoln Taurus is a joke. It's main competition is from Buick (both are 'near-luxury' makes).

      And the Lincoln Taurus wraps up 2009 with 6 straight months of sales below what they were last year.

      Bold moves indeed.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I agree with lorenzo about the CTS's front end... it needs some more refinement before it looks 'right' to me. I'd love to see it have some CTS-V influence.

      But since when is 31MPG all that 'excellent'? I regularly achieve upwards of 33MPG in my RSX-S on the highway, and hover around 29MPG in the city if i'm not too hard on the go pedal. And I have more useable cargo room than the HS250 and a lot more fun driving around.
        invisiblepigeon3
        • 5 Years Ago
        The HS250 is the most pointless car Lexus has ever released, and all of their hybrids are really stupid. None of them even get better gas mileage than the regular models, and the 4 cylinder HS barely gets better gas mileage than my V6 IS250. As a former Prius owner, I can tell you that hybrids are total wastes of time.
        Carlos
        • 5 Years Ago
        At first I was going to say thats average mpg but when I did the math your average mpg is the same as the HS250. So I'm not entirely sure how for a dedicated hybrid that is good mpg. Diesel > Hybrid anyway :p!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Considering that your RSX-S is rated at 20/28/23 by the EPA (I used an '06 with the 6spd, not sure what you have exactly), you are achieving much higher than what the vehicle is rated for.

        In other words, if you can pull those figures out of an RSX-S, then you could pull similarly high numbers out of an HS250h.

        Plus, the HS250h is rated at 35mpg combined by the EPA which means that it seems as though they weren't exactly driving for economy in their tests.
      • 5 Years Ago
      love this car, and that Cadillac is making products that can compete on the world stage.
      But that front end, the grill in particular - is looking big, dated and plasticky these days.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Consumer Reports once gave negative points to the Ford F-250 and Chevy Silverado 2500HD because they were HARD TO CLIMB INTO.

      I would not believe a word Consumer Reports says about cars
      Carlos
      • 5 Years Ago
      I thought people stopped reading consumer reports 15 years ago when it was well established that they have always been biased towards import brands?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        Neither the Vibe or the Matrix are recommended. They both have the same rating. The Vibe actually has slightly higher reliability than the Matrix. Quit lying.
        JDM Life
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        Its not bias. Its the truth deal with it.

        American auto are getting better but its known Imports are more reliable.
        invisiblepigeon3
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        They report what their surveys tell them. How are they biased if a bunch of Cadillacs break down?

        Also, they haven't recommended Mercedes Benz cars because of reliability, for ages. Biased toward imports when just about every MB and Audi has a black circle next to reliability?

        You're just a domestic fanboy, showing your bias now, aren't you?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        Biased towards imports? Must be why Ford's collecting recommendations from them.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        So their recent recommendation of just about everything Ford makes, the current Malibu, the Lambda crossovers, this CTS, and their past recognition of cars like the PT Cruiser, Impala, Regal, Grand Prix, and their condemnation of the Echo, Yaris and Matrix, the obvious black circles in any V6 Honda from 2000-2004, every VW and Benz, etc, etc all constitute "pro-import bias"?

        I know this may be hard to believe, but maybe, just maybe, many American cars really haven't been very good from 1975 through to 2005, and maybe, just maybe, this might have something to do with why two American car companies are bankrupt and one is mortgaged to it's eyeballs?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        I've been subscribing to CR for a few years now and I read their automotive recommendations with a grain of salt. Even some of the standard reviews are off compared to the other consumer magazines.

        The two vehicles in our house include my wife '04 Honda Accord V6 EX and my 06' Lexus IS350. The Accord (with a little over 64,000 miles) has not been as reliable in the past 5-years as CR had been recommending, with many issues that I had to address out of my own pocket (as things tend to break down after the 3-year warranty expires). The Lexus (with some 21,000 miles) mechanically has been fine (save for some recalls), except that the interior hasn't met my quality standards with BSR that continued to grow as the miles increased (and taking trips to the dealerships hasn't helped).

        Now, both cars have been on CR's recommendation list. If I bothered to fill-out their long subscriber surveys over the years, I may have made a dent in their results. Or perhaps I wouldn't. So that's why I don't bother.

        All I can say is that I would take CR's reporting under a grain of salt, and make your decision based further information like personal reviews on various automotive sites, including dedicated forums and review pages. Unfortunately, many buyers rely on this ONE source and make their purchasing decision based on everything that CR writes.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        "@ Aprime


        Exactly. But when Toyota and Honda get the nod is their BIAS lmaoooo"

        Good point.

        I think imports are just as reliable as the domestics...nowadays. Back in the 80s and 90s...imports ruled the world because the domestics forgot how to make cars...and only now are showing SOME proof that they indeed can build a competent car (Malibu).
        JDM Life
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        @ Aprime


        Exactly. But when Toyota and Honda get the nod is their BIAS lmaoooo
        Carlos
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        @invisiblepigeon3

        I'm far from biased against imports, its a proven fact that for a long while even though a lot of american companies produced reliable cars that cr has chosen imports over american. Don't believe me go read for yourself.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        CR, in the same issue, recommended the Toyota Matrix but not the Pontiac Vibe. I guess there is no way the publication is biased
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Carlos
        When the neon R/T came out, they reported it had a zero to 60 time of 9 seconds. Car and Driver, Motor Trend, and every other publication listed 6.5-7.5 seconds. When asked why it was so long, they replied they didn't put the pedal down all the way, because they figured most consumers wouldn't.

        WTF.

        CR makes a good way to start fires or wipe butts, that's it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I love the CTS, but we have three of them waiting for new timing chains. These are 08's with miles in the teens. They are having problems with them stretching, and turning the check engine lights on because the timing is slightly off. Yes, that's stretching timing chains, on both motors.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wait a sec...did I read that correctly? The CTS is OVER $50k?!?!?!?! In EVERY test from the Big 3 magazines, (Car & Driver, Motortrend, and Road & Track) the Infiniti G35/G37 and BMW beat the CTS...for THOUSANDS less than $50,000!!! Oh wait...in typical GM fashion you'll be able to find CTSs for up to $15,000 off soon enough.

      As far as Consumer Reports not recommending it...just try to check on Caddy's reliability for the past few DECADES. It's pretty apparent why...
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's pretty difficult to pay over $50K for a CTS. This vehicle only MSRPed just under $51K and as you well know, no one pays MSRP. This vehicle listed is the top of the line model (non-V), including the $1800 19" wheel/suspension package and floor mats. The only options available above this are crazy paint job, AWD, spoilers and rear seat entertainment system.

        There's no comparison between a CTS and a G35. Maybe a G37 is better, I don't know anyone who has one.

        A G37 configured as close to possible as this car is $42K, it includes active cruise (the caddy doesn't), but doesn't have a moonroof (the caddy does).
      • 5 Years Ago
      i thought that if it wins its automatically recommended?
        invisiblepigeon3
        • 5 Years Ago
        They don't recommend unreliable cars.
        • 5 Years Ago
        If reliability is an issue than I can entirely understand why they don't recommend it. It's nice to see that they're at least acknowledging how the new CTS is an excellent luxury sports sedan. The only thing I'm surprised about is the Lincoln MKS. ORDINARY driving experience? I'm pretty sure it's the fastest car out of any in the test - by a decent margin...

        Sal Collaziano
        http://www.cadillacforums.com
        • 5 Years Ago
        This year is the first year that Toyota had the most recalled vehicles, and it largely had to do with the gas pedal shortening and floormat recall. Chrysler and GM actually had the MOST recalls this year (less in total car volume though). In previous years it was all Ford and GM topping the recall lists. IMO, if CR started including things like safety label and floor mats into their reliability score, I'd have to stop reading it.

        The reliablity rating includes user collected datas of -any- problems, so unintended acceleration would likely be reported by car owners.

        The fact is that the Cadillac CTS has had lower reliablity as reported by owners, so they cannot get the recommendation by CR. CR discloses this on their website, and this rule applies to ALL cars.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "They don't recommend unreliable cars"

        This shouldn't be news to anyone who has ever read CR. To be recommended, a car must have above-average reliability, meet certain crash standards and perform well. There have been all sorts of cars that are safe and reliable but suck (the Impala and Echo), cars that are reliable and perform well but aren't crash-safe (many compacts without side airbags) and all sorts of cars that are safe and perform well enough to top the rankings, but aren't reliable (most European cars, the pre-2004 Ford Focus).

        The E39 5-Series was perenially CR's "Best Car Tested", and the Passat and Focus were top of their classes for years. None were recommended.

        "Why would they recommend any Toyota then?"

        Because, despite wishful internet forum wankery, their products are actually pretty reliable. The Camry and Avalon had first-year teething problems, and CR has rarely recommended the V8 4Runner. That's it. You could dig up Tacomas and some engine sludge issues from about ten years ago, but then you could also bring up GM's Dex-cool/Plastic Intake Manifold issues, or Chrysler's automatic transmissions of a decade ago.

        Consumer Reports is also smart enough (unlike, oh, lots of people, many of whom post to this forum) to understand the recalls do not really affect reliability until you get into the 10 recalls per *model* per year like the first-cut Focus, X5 or Mercedes ML-Class. Yes, Toyota had a lot of recalls this year. So what? Toyota a) sells a lot of cars that share a platform, b) the recalls weren't for reliability issues, and c) a recall to cut away a chunk of the gas pedal has nothing to with whether or not your transmission will crap out after the powertrain warranty expires.

        I'd also like to point out that CR recommends *models* and not *brands*. They will give a specific *model* and automatic recommendation after redesign if previous *models* were reliable, but they will also rescind the designation, sometimes retroactively, if it proves less than above average.

        In case you hadn't noticed, this is Autoblog trolling for a flamewar again. Nothing gets a good four-hundred post discussion (and page-hit counts) like poking GM fans still nursing a monster chip on their shoulder.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hi Jeez,

        I'll be honest, upon heading to CR's website I'm impressed by their disclosure. Apparently they do weight their scores based on the severity of the issue. Their lack of detail on the subject is still troubling, but it is better than any disclosure read previously in a CR magazine about two years ago. Again it could have been present then as well, but I don't recall it. I'm happy to give you that argument. :-) That still doesn't explain their refusal to publish the exact weights and measures they use, but I would imagine that is largely due to competitive concerns.

        I am still worried about two other areas:

        1) Their tendency to assume the reliability of redesigned models based on their predecessors performance. One example that comes to mind was their recommendation (and subsequent withdrawal of said recommendation) of the 2007 Toyota Camry V6 and the 2007 Tundra after they faced a series of "unexpected" reliability issues. Their own explanation was that they based their analysis on previous results which simply doesn't make sense after a significant MCE or redesign.

        2) Their complete reliance on self report measures & taking their sample from their own subscriber base. Taking a sample of individuals while providing their own subjective analysis of products is a pretty simple source of error. I don't see any way they can really remedy this, but it just shows that all such results should be taken with a pinch of salt. (Much like everything else) ;-)

        The bottom line is this though: The most unreliable of cars today are on par with some of the most reliable vehicles from 5 years ago. The range of scores is far more smaller and more concentrated than ever before, so it is highly unlikely that one is going to buy a a 2010 Pinto anytime soon.

        Essay over.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Why would they recommend any Toyota then?? More recalls than any other manufacturer. That seems a bit unreliable. Before you Toyota people get all up in arms I'm not saying Toyotas are bad. I am just pointing out the obvious bias by these people.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sorry for the triple replies.

        My bad about the RL trunk. The RL was redesigned last year, including a new larger engine and 2.2" stretch. So the trunk is larger now.

        But of course even though it's just been redesigned and reengined it still gets a CR recommendation even though CR said they'd stop recommending cars without histories.

        I guess because it's Japanese?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jeez brings up a good point. CR methodology is slightly flawed in that owners have to report reliability issues - you can't report unintended acceleration when you're dead.

        Toyota FTMFW
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jeez,

        Lets be fair. Unintended acceleration is just the latest cover up by Toyota. NHTSA is still looking into that. Gas pedal hanging on floormat is not the whole story. It took Audi decades to recover from that and nobody could ever confirm it. Toyota has had broken camshafts,tailgates bending under normal pressure,excessive frame and brake line rust,Excessive oil consumption,excessive engine sludge, numerous models with transmission failure (mostly Tundra) and those are just the ones I can recall. Yes Ford has had quite a few due to the cruise control switch. GM had a few with the heated wiper deal,but the domestics have been pretty good all in all (excluding Mopar). So lets not look at this with a jaded perception. Those are facts. Look it up!!
        • 5 Years Ago
        psarhjinian:
        My 2000 Audi A6 2.7T was recommended by CR. It was recommended based upon history of cars which apparently were only tangentially related. I say this because me and all my Audi buying friends at the time had myriad problems with the car. 3 fuel sensor recalls, throttle body boots, etc. And if you think "only" 3 recalls on your car (and not 10) in a year isn't a big deal, I think you're insane. My Audi was in the shop "only" 3-5 times a year for 2 years and it felt like I was just renting it. Everyone I knew noticed and said "what's up with your car" when I drove up in a loaner.

        A new car can have below average reliability if it needs fixing, what, 3 times a year and you think it's okay to be fixed 3x due to recalls and still not be a big deal?

        I understand the concept of not recommending unreliable cars. What I don't understand is the concept of recommending cars of unknown reliability if they happen to be foreign and from a car company they like.

        Oh, and calling the RL's trunk modest is being a bit kind. It's rather small.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @LS

        My Honda Fit was recalled once, in the first year I owned it, for a minor wiring fix that might, eventually, if left untreated for a few years in salt-belt weather, result in the passenger airbag sensor reporting that no one is sitting in the seat. Does that mean the Fit was unreliable?

        The point I was making is that people need to understand the distinction between recall *magnitude* and the likelihood a vehicle is reliable. Toyota, for example, sells a lot Camries, and the Camry platform and the powertrains it uses, as well as many of the accessory electronics and hardware, are shared with a lot of other cars. A recall is automatically going to affect a few million cars, but the recall can be for something truly insignficant and easy to fix. Similarly, GM's intake manifold/coolant mis-spec issues affect a few million cars, but there's never been a recall issued. Does the lack of a recall imply reliability?

        Recalls aren't indicative of quality problems until you're talking about gross failures of quality assurance like, eg, the first years of the Focus, ML or X5.

        The second point is that people confuse statistical reliability with absolute reliability. I'm sure there are people with 1976 Dodge Aspens that have never done anything but change the oil, brakes, tires and tune the thing up occasionally. I'm similarly sure that there's Corollas (pick a year, any year) that are lemons and see all four wheels fall off when their owner first drives out of the lot. But *statistically* the Corolla is more reliable than the Aspen. Yet people deride the stats and cling to anecdotes.


        CR is generally pretty good in their determinations, and they correct and note problems retroactively as they crop up in surveys.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jonathon, as I mentioned in another comment, they do break down the type of problems that were reported (major/minor transmission, body hardware, climate control, etc). They explain this in their reliability rating explanation page. This page also explains their methodology. Maybe it's not up to the level of a peer-reviewed scientific journal, but we're talking about auto reliability data here. If you have specific questions, feel free to e-mail them.

        "One other caveat of their refusal to release their methodology is the inability for anybody to understand the nature of a quality issue. Does a minor interior rattle equate to the same deduction as an engine sludge issue? Once again, it is simply dubious at best. "

        Once again, you're incorrect. They note that minor issues are weighted less in overall reliability ratings. Major issues are weighted much more. This is explained on the same page I mentioned before.
        • 5 Years Ago
        My argument is not that a single recall means the car is unreliable. My argument is that taking your car into the shop 3x a year even for recalls, should be plenty of reason to mark a car down. It shouldn't take 10 recalls.

        If I have to be without my car 3x a year due to things other than oil changes, then it's a mark against it, period. Because few people buy cars with the expectation of not being able to use it.

        Your statistical versus absolute thing seems more like a statistical versus anecdotal thing. On relative versus absolute, virtually every car now is absolutely many times more reliable than a car was 20-30 years ago. When's the last time you had your car stop working due to pitted points? It literally never happens anymore.

        I think the core of your argument that the just because the GM was never recalled doesn't mean it's more reliable completely ignores the point that perhaps Toyota had problems they never recalled for. And they did, and they affected the Camry.

        A simple way to say it is statistics are imperfect, they don't always tell the whole picture, because of sampling errors (both in-built or bad luck). But to extend this to then say that the errors definitely go one way, that the Japanese are more reliable than indicated but GM is worse as your Toyota versus GM example seems to indicate is just to insert your own biases.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hey Sal. I want to join your forums and share my experiences with stuff like exactly what are those grooves in the factory crossbars for my CTS Wagon good for. But your site won't let me sign up because I use yahoo as my primary email.

        I don't use my ISPs email because I like the freedom to switch ISPs. So I can't join your forum? I think your policies are out of date.
    • Load More Comments