2016 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study
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2016 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study

J.D. Power’s 2016 Initial Quality Study has a major change this year. For the first time in decades, a luxury brand failed to top the list. This study, which differs from the company’s long-term Vehicle Dependability Study, examines problems experienced in the first 90 days of ownership. Quality is determined by the number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) with 105 PP100 being the industry average.

While manufacturers may tout the numbers in order to boost both sales and their image, the study suffers from a number of issues. Mainly, in the eyes of the study, all problems are created equal. An issue with the bluetooth counts just as strongly as a manufacturing defect. Complaints about rough shifting transmission is counted as a quality issue, even if the transmission is shifting exactly as designed. A poor design doesn’t necessarily mean there is an issue with the quality.

Follow along as we look at the five top-ranked and the five lowest-ranked automakers in J.D. Power's 2016 Initial Quality Study.

1. Kia
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1. Kia

Kia has beat out every other automaker and topped the list for the first time with 83 PP100. The Korean automaker moved up from second place in 2015. The Kia Soul proved topped the brand with 18 PP100.

Research the 2016 Kia Soul
2. Porsche
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2. Porsche

Porsche, after topping the list the past three years, fell to number two with 84 PP100. That’s down from 80 PP100.
Research the 2016 Porsche Cayenne
3. Hyundai
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3. Hyundai

Kia’s sister company Hyundai moved up to number three with 92 PP100. The two companies share many designs and components, so it should be no surprise that they’re closely matched.
Research the 2016 Hyundai Sonata
4. Toyota
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4. Toyota

Toyota is up from number 9 in 2015 with 93 PP100. The beats out fellow Japanese brands, but still falls short of the Korean competition.

Research the 2016 Toyota Camry
5. BMW
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5. BMW

BMW moves up one place with 94 PP100. The German company’s IQS scores have been improving over the past several years.
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27. (Tie) Jaguar
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27. (Tie) Jaguar

Jaguar is tied for 27th and fifth worst overall with 127 PP100. The company fell all the way from third in 2015 where the study reported only 93 PP100.

Research the 2016 Jaguar XJ
27. (Tie)
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27. (Tie)

Mazda is tied at 27th overall with 127 PP100. The company is the lowest ranked Japanese manufacturer on this year’s list and is down from 23rd in 2015 with 123 PP100.
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27. (Tie) Mini
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27. (Tie) Mini

Mini is tied with Jaguar and Mazda at 27th with 127 PP100. The BMW-owned brand was tied for 21st in 2015 with 122 PP100.
Research the Mini Cooper
30. Land Rover
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30. Land Rover

Land Rover, like sister company Jaguar, is down from 2015. The company’s rating of 132 PP100, an improvement over 2015, puts it at 30th overall.
Research the 2016 Land Rover Range Rover Sport
31. Volvo
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31. Volvo

Volvo took a big hit, falling from 19th to 30th overall with 152 PP100. That’s far off the 120 PP100 the company had in 2015.
Research the 2016 Volvo XC90
32. Fiat
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32. Fiat

Fiat, up one place, is no longer last. JD Power reports 174 PP100, down from 161 PP100.
Research the 2016 Fiat 500X
33. Smart
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33. Smart

Smarts switched places with Fiat this year. The company’s rating of 216 PP100 is far of the 154 PP100 they achieved in 2015.
Research the 2016 Smart Fortwo
Table
  • Image Credit: J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Initial Quality StudySM (IQS)

Table

Overall industry quality improved by 6 percent, falling from 112 PP100 in 2015. 21 of the 33 brands represented improved in quality, with Chrysler and Jeep by improving by 28 PP100 year over year.


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