Sounds a whole lot like my Mystique. Love the car, but reliability is
NOT it's strong suit - mostly nickel and dime stuff since I do most of
my own repairs, but irritating at best. Being the high end V6 with all
the toys, it is NOT easy to work on either. Something about it's mixed
heritage I guess.
LMAO. I bought one too in 2001, and sold it in 2004. Last GM I will
ever buy. Had transmission issues early on, many bandaid type repairs,
eventually told them to put a new one in as we are getting close to
lemon law - hint - hint. After being jacked around, I vowed it was my
No, Powers has TWO different studies, the IQS (Initial Quality Study), and
VDS (Vehicle Dependability Study). I pretty much ignore all of the IQS
surveys as most of the automakers are within a couple of defects per 100
vehicles of each other. It's the VDS that's the important one. Here's a
link to the 2009 study, go check it out...
But this is still a survey, with the limitations of a survey.
Plus, the study was with cars that were about 2 or 3 years old (2006
model year study done in Oct. 2008). It doesn't say how well cars hold
up after this period. What would be a far better study would be a study
of what is actually replaced by owners during the life of the car. It
would be a hard study to do.
If you survey Customers this might be a hard survey. However if you
survey parts suppliers, it should be relatively easy. I've always
assumed manufacturers know the truth, but have no incentive to make it
public. I am certain that Ford and GM and Toyota and...all have a
pretty good idea of the reliability of each other's products. They
just aren't telling us...
Both are just about worthless as far as guiding the consumer. The
difference between the Top rated Buick at 122 and the average at 170
is "per 100 cars". So for the ONE car owned by the consumer it's a
trivial difference of 0.48 problems, whether that's per year or over
the entire 3 years I couldn't tell. But in any case, anyone who gets
their panties in a bunch over that not quite half a problem needs to
get a hobby. You have to get way down toward the bottom to seen
enough difference in the numbers to get the least bit excited. If
they told you the COST instead of OCCURANCE it would be a whole lot
more useful. I also noticed their disclaimer about statistical
significance. Since they felt they needed to say it I'm guessing the
truth is that when looked at with the common statistical tests of
significance their survey isn't much better then toilet paper.
You make a valid point in that it would very useful to know what are the
differences in the "problems" each make has. It makes a big difference if
the problems are minor, such as leak or part recall, or major - like a
I don't completely agree with this. The CR survey is very simplistic.
A lot of the questions depend on the responder making value
judgements. These judgements are based on the experience / beliefs /
opinions of the reponders. These factors are at least partially
influenced by what CR says about a given vehicle. If CR says a Camry
is reliable, then the respondents are more likely to shade their
answers in that direction. Probably a small shading, but given the
tiny differences in the results, it does not take much to seem
significant given CRs method of reporting the results. The little
shaded circle methods makes it seem that the differences are much more
significant than they really are. The difference between the horrible
black dot rating and the wonderful red dot rating can be trivial in
some cases. So small shadings in the responses can look like major
differnces, when in fact they are not. And then there is the whole
problem of the pool of responders. I would argue that the readership
of CR is biased towards a group of people who agree with the CR
editorial opinions. Since CR has shown a marked prefernce for Toyota
products over recent years, I believe the CR reasdership is more
likely to be disposed towards believing Toyotas are more reliable than
other cars. I believe this will lead towards a bias in the survey
results. Again, maybe a small bias, but that is all it takes to
completely screw up the results as interperted by the CR editiorial
Definitely true. This probably explainis why Lexus always has high
ratings. However, it probably works against Toyota, since Toyota
dealerships are usually rated worse than average in other surveys.
Toyota/Honda owners will disagree with what you said.
But you hit the high spots.
Of course CR will never release the number of survey respondents of
each make of car.
Might look funny to see that 90% of the survey respondents are
reporting on Toyotas/Hondas.
Why subscribe to a magazine then not follow its advice about your
CR does do some good stuff on smaller purchases and other matters
though, so it is a useful tool.
That's why I was a long-time subscriber.
Nowadays there are net resources with product reviews.
As you said, the use of colored circles dots is a big weakness.
More detail on what was repaired and actual costs could very well save
some subscribers money when they select their car - especially used
I get that detail through other sources (mechanics, net complaints,
forums, etc) and do very well with costs on my used cars.
Chevys. The knocks from CR on Chevys and other cars have made them a
real bargain on the used car market - if you are even a bit
The JD Powers surveys are often knocked, but they are professional
surveys paid for by the auto manufacturers. Last I looked the
individual owners surveyed are paid 20 bucks to tell the truth.
BTW, I never filled out a CR survey.
Even when my Chevys were young enough to qualify, I didn't want to
mess up a good thing by reporting no problems.
FYI, it seems CR is now a free magazine, at least for me.
I let my subscription lapse about 5 years ago, but continue to get the
magazine in the mail. Along with occasional letters asking me to
re-subscribe. I guess they think sending me the magazines is an
enticement to subscribe. Not a good sales practice overall, I think.
I don't believe subjectivity affects the reliability ratings much
because CR also asks owners if they'd buy the same vehicle again, and
some vehicles where the owners overwhelmingly answer yes are ranked
among the least reliable. IOW the very same people who love their
cars admit that their cars have been troublesome, the Chevy Corvette
being a prime example.
On Thu, 19 Nov 2009 23:28:39 -0800 (PST), "larry moe 'n curly"
You need to remember too, the JD Power report is not so much about
reliability as "initial quality " - at least that's the report most
often referred to. That means what the car was like when first
purchased - has little to do with what you had 6 months later. A new
Caddy is a sight to behold, and for the first couple weeks you may be
"in heaven" - from the experience of several friends, that turns to a
minimum of "purgatory" within 6 months.
Just a point...."largely the same parts" may not be the same as equivalent
I am not defending CR.. I have held them up to doubt many times on other
of products, where they clearly had no idea what they were talking about.
The only differences were the outer skins. They were the same platform
I've always worried about a company that reviews toasters rating
sophisticated devices, particularly consumer electronics and automobiles.
But they do have the advantage of being advertisement free...
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