I can't tell you how many times I've been driving with friends or family in a decidedly nice Korean press car, only to have a passenger notice the logo on the steering wheel and exclaim, "Wait... this is a Kia?" For every time I roll my eyes at a story with a lede about how Hyundai "is really gaining momentum these days," I get equally annoyed when people comment on how Kia is finally starting to make decent cars. This is hardly news. The brand has been pumping out really solid stuff for a while
Reputation is everything, according to a new survey by J.D. Power and Associates. The 2012 Avoider Study found that 43 percent of buyers who steer clear of a particular model due to quality concerns do so merely because of common knowledge. Ratings and reviews – our stock in trade – were cited by 38 percent, while previous ownership of a model caused scorn in only 14 percent of respondents.