According to the surveys, they hold up better in the long term.
What marketing goes into slanting those surveys and putting bias into
JD Powers and Cons;umer Reports surveys? And why did CR recently
announce that they no longer recommended the 4WD Tundra and the 6-
speed automatic Camry? And for at least a year CR has rated the Ford
Focus/Mercury Milan as one of the most reliable vehicles and said that
at only 30% of all new Fords had worse than average reliability.
Where's the pro-Toyota or anti-Ford, anti-GM bias here?
Most of the marketing that brags about vehicle longevity has come from
Ford and GM, especially for their trucks.
Even the America-hating New York Times mentioned it just a few years
ago, in an article about the Dodge Dart being a collectible car.
Lots of people know about the greatness of the Slant Six and the
The Toyota sludge problem has been mentioned a lot over the past
couple of years. Where did you get the idea that the mainstream news
media has had only praise for Toyota (many articles about Toyota
becoming #1 have pointed out the sludge problem and high number of
recalls) and only criticism for the Detroit Three?
Funny, I am considering a Focus for my next car, if I buy new. It won't
have an automatic transmission, so that eliminates most American cars.
Most likely I will have a Focus, a Pontiac Vibe, Toyota Prius, Honda
Civic, Honda Civic (with or without hybrid), Ford Escape or Escape
Hybrid, Dodge Caliber, Mazda 3, Chevy Cobalt or Malibu Hybrid, Saturn
Aura or Astra (with or without hybrid) or Honda Fit.
*snerk* that reminds me of a (ventriloquist)Jeff Dunham joke:
"Did you ever hear a Prius go by? It goes eeeeyyyyooowwnngI'M GAYnnnnng!
And when the engine can't turn over, it goes, homohomohomohomohomo."
Mean, I know.
I looked at a Focus for my son. They were nice enough, but in the end we got
a Mazda3. The main reason was front seat leg room (my son has long legs). Of
the smaller cars available today, the Mazda3 seemed to have the best room
for my son (and me). We got the upgraded model (4 wheel disc brakes, power
windows, cruise ABS, A/C). My son wanted an automatic. I like the car very
much. It has as much front seat leg room as my Fusion, but not quite as much
head room. As you would expect the hip room is less, but I actually prefer
the seats. It is not as quiet as the Fusion, but it is not noisy either. The
trunk is very large. The only negative I see is that the Mazda3 CD player
doesn't do MP3s (in some models they do - not sure what determines which you
get). My son didn't care - it has an auxiliary input and he has all his
music on an iPod. My Son actually prefers the Mazda3 to the 2004 Accord his
Mother formerly let him drive. He says it has more leg room. We also looked
at Corollas and Sentras, but they were more expensive and not even as nice
as the Focus we test drove. I was not surprised that the Corolla was wildly
overpriced, but I was shocked at the asking price on the Sentra (and I even
qualify for Nissan Supplier Pricing). The Mazda3 was more expensive than a
comparable Focus, but the extra leg room made it worth the difference.
And finally, the Mazda dealer was great! Wonderful buying experience. I
emailed a bunch of dealers looking for prices. The Mazda dealer quoted me a
price well under supplier pricing (Mazda S Plan). They took us around the
lot and opened every Mazda3 we asked about and turned us loose with 2
different Mazda3s to test drive. When we decided we wanted a different car
than originally quoted, they gave me an even better price.
You too? I've used Bell Road Toyota -- the buying experience is
rarely pleasant there (was even worse when cocaine was more popular),
but the mechanics seem to be very good, although labor rates are on
the high side.
I know that, but odds are that if I buy a Toyota I won't need the
dealer as much as if I buy a Ford. Also the Toyota and Nissan dealers
around here seem to take problems more seriously and not dismiss
everything as being "normal", as the Ford dealer that rated 7th best
in the US does.
On Sun, 6 Jan 2008 16:21:02 -0800 (PST), "larry moe 'n curly"
It's funny how everyone just ignores the horrible sludge problems that
burned up so many Toyota engines. Then there was the head gasket
problems. And Honda has some transmission that has a major defect
that they pretend it doesn't have till you twist their arm, otherwise
they just tell you it's "normal" and hope you'll go away till the
warranty expires. And there is the Isuzu that cloged it's hydraulic
lifters if you didn't use synthetic oil in it but of course they don't
tell you that till after you complain about the noise. There isn't a
dime's worth of difference in the reliability of Ford's and Chevy's
compared to the "imports". For some reason it's fashionable to knock
American cars now days no matter what the facts are. People who get
250K miles from the American car somehow aren't satisfied and still go
buy an import due to the constant negative BS about American cars.
It probably wouldn't frost my balls so much if I didn't see how our
fleet of thousands of American vehicles performs. They just roll up
the miles yet get no respect.
Except that Toyotas and Hondas last longer, on average, than those from
the Michigan 3. At least those that have been on the road long enough
for us to know.
Except that it's not BS.
There's no doubt that cars from the Michigan 3 last longer than they
used to and their quality has greatly improved. So has the quality of
the imports. Toyota really worked hard in 2007 to decrease the number of
recalls last year.
That survey has nothing to do with how long a vehicle lasts. It
surveys an owner to determine how many problems they have with a three
year old car. The average three year old Ford had 2.21 problems, the
average 3 year old Toyota had 1.8 problems. If you round them both off
to the nearest problem, they both had 2 problems......Not a
Well since JD Powers didn't give us a margin of error on the
statistics, it might be that there is no actual difference. Then again
your math is not to good either. You could say a Ford has 23% more
problems than a Toyota, or that a Toyota has 19% fewer problems than a
Ford - but no where can I get a 25% difference....
At any rate using percentage in this manner is the sort of clever
disinformation that Toyota likes to use. Saying that the average 3
year old Toyota owner has 25% fewer problems is misleading if not
downright dishonest. The old saying - "Figures don't lie, but liars
figure" - seems appropriate in this case. You can make a case that the
average Toyota owner had ..maybe...one fewer problem than the average
Ford owner, but that is about all. You don't even have any comparison
of the cost of the problems. It might be that the three year old Ford
owner had three problems that cost nothing, while the three year old
Toyota owner had 2 problems that cost $5k dollars (even if covered by
warranty). I think the only thing you can draw from that particular JD
Powers press release is that most three years old cars from the volume
manufacturers have very few problems. Did you notice that 3 year old
Scions (a Toyota after all) had essentially the same number of
problems as 3 year old Fords? And how do you explain that three year
old Mercuys had fewer problems than three year old Toyotas (6 % fewer
problems..). Mercurys are just rebadged Fords. Why would they be so
much more reliable?
I haven't looked at JD Powers surveys, but Consumer Reports rarely
shows much difference among rebadged cars from the same manufacturer.
Also CR shows Scions to be more reliable than Fords of the same ages.
That is the case now, but it wasn't always the case. I believe CR got wise
and now blends the data for badge engineered cars.
Which Scions and which Fords. But honestly, any short comings for the JD
Power results are trivial compared to the completely unscientific CR survey.
I feel bad just using the term "survey" when describing the CR popularity
CR reliability ratings
Scion tC - very good
Scion xB - very good
Ford Crown Victoria - very good
Ford Fusion - very good
All the other Ford cars are rated average. Hard to know if there is much of
a statistical difference between average and very good.
Yet, there may be problems more common to one brand vs. another. For
example, there may be problems that show up more only in the 4-cylinder
Atkinson engines that are available only in Ford Escapes and Mercury
Mariners, so the Mazda Tribute might be affected less often than the
Mercury Mariner and Ford Escape, affecting the numbers of these three
In addition, owners of brand may have different tolerances of different
things failing. For example, buyers of Mercuries might be bothered more
by the recall of the heater blower resistor that had to be replaced in
my Ford Contour, so Mercury Mystique owners might be more likely to
report blower resistors that had to be replaced under recall as a
problem than Ford Contour owners.
So even sister vehicles might have different problem records because of
different hardware or different perceptions of what is expected.
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