J.D. Power Releases 2013 Survey Results

J.D. Power announced the results of its annual Initial Quality Survey (IQS) for 2013. Big winners include General Motors, which racked up eight individual model wins, and Porsche, which led all automakers with 80 problems per 100 vehicles (PP100).

Although it may seem that industry quality is down as a whole because of an increase in the overall industry average (from 102 to 113), J.D. Power says this year’s IQS results cannot be compared with previous years because of a redesign in the survey. The 2013 IQS was conducted online for the first time, and J.D. Power says this allowed them to collect more detailed responses from the more than 83,000 new car owners and lessees who participated.

The 233 questions of the IQS ask owners of 2013 model year vehicles to report problems or defects that occur within the first 90 days of ownership. J.D. Power notes that almost two-thirds of problems for 2013 are categorized as design-related issues rather than manufacturing defects, meaning that they are not simple snags that can be fixed at a dealership. Like in 2012, many of the problems raised in the survey results were related to in-car technology systems, such as Bluetooth phone pairing, navigation, and voice recognition software. The recent spread of multimedia interfaces into more mainstream models such as Hyundai’s BlueLink, Chrysler’s UConnect, the MyFord Touch systems is likely at play here as owners adjust to more complex functionality in their vehicles. Ford finds itself near the bottom of the pack with 131 PP100 this year, unsurprising considering the well-publicized criticism of the My Ford Touch system which has prompted many updates and bug fixes.

Brand Results

The top-rated brand this year is Porsche, with a reported 80 problems per 100 vehicles (PP100). GMC ranked second with 90 PP100, with Lexus, Infiniti, and Chevrolet rounding out the top five. Although 2013 marks the end of Lexus’ consecutive wins in 2011 and 2012 as the top-rated brand, Lexus did still claim the top-ranked individual vehicle overall with the 2013 LS at only 59 PP100.

Individual Model Awards

GM took home eight individual model awards among the 26 segments, the most of any automaker. Chevrolet claimed five of those: the Impala for large car, the Camaro for midsized sporty car (tie), the Tahoe for large CUV, the Silverado HD for large heavy duty pickup, and the Avalanche for large light duty pickup (tie). The Cadillac Escalade, Buick Encore, and GMC Sierra HD rounded out GM’s eight awards.

Among other automakers, Honda, Kia, Mazda, and Porsche were next best with two segment awards each: Honda for the CR-V and Civic; Kia for the Soul and Sportage; Mazda for the 2 and MX-5 Miata; and Porsche for the Boxster and 911. The Civic’s win is notable due to its emergency refresh for 2013; the highest-ranked compact car in 2012 was the Toyota Corolla.

Winners in other key segments include the Toyota Camry for midsized car, the Acura TL for compact premium car, and the Nissan Murano for midsize CUV.

Check out the full IQS results below.

Source: J.D. Power

City Car*

Highest Ranked: smart fortwo

Chevrolet Spark

Sub-Compact Car

Highest Ranked: Mazda2

Hyundai Accent

Honda Fit

Compact Car

Highest Ranked: Honda Civic

Toyota Corolla

Honda Insight

Compact Sporty Car

Highest Ranked: Mazda MX-5 Miata

Compact Premium Car

Highest Ranked: Acura TL

Compact Premium Sporty Car

Highest Ranked: Porsche Boxster

Midsize Car

Highest Ranked: Toyota Camry

Hyundai Sonata

Buick Regal

Midsize Sporty Car*

Highest Ranked: Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Mustang (tie)

Midsize Premium Car

Highest Ranked: Hyundai Genesis Sedan

Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan/Wagon

Jaguar XF, Lexus GS (tie)

Large Premium Car

Highest Ranked: Lexus LS

Audi A8

Porsche Panamera

Midsize Premium Sporty Car*

Highest Ranked: Porsche 911

Large Car

Highest Ranked: Chevrolet Impala

Hyundai Azera

Chrysler 300 Series

Sub-Compact CUV

Highest Ranked: Buick Encore, Kia Sportage (tie)

Nissan Juke

Compact CUV

Highest Ranked: Honda CR-V

Toyota FJ Cruiser

Chevrolet Equinox

Compact Premium CUV

Highest Ranked: Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class

Audi Allroad

Acura RDX

Compact MPV*

Highest Ranked: Kia Soul


Midsize CUV

Highest Ranked: Nissan Murano

Buick Enclave

Hyundai Santa Fe

Midsize Premium CUV

Highest Ranked: Infiniti FX

Lexus GS

Porsche Cayenne


Highest Ranked: Chrysler Town & Country

Honda Odyssey

Large CUV*

Highest Ranked: Chevrolet Tahoe

Toyota Sequoia

Large Premium CUV*

Highest Ranked: Cadillac Escalade

Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

Large Light Duty Pickup

Highest Ranked: Chevrolet Avalanche, GMC Sierra LD (tie)

Chevrolet Silverado LD

*No other model in this segment performs above segment average.

By Joseph Capparella