Top Ranked Manufacturers
For the first time since CarMD began ranking manufacturers, Honda ranks no. 1, edging out Hyundai (no. 2). Rounding out the top five vehicle manufacturers of 2014 are no. 3 Toyota, no. 4 GM and no. 5 Ford. New to this year's list of the 10 most reliable manufacturers are Mazda (no. 9) and BMW (no. 10), beating out Mitsubishi and Volkswagen, which dropped off the list.
Average Repair Cost
(Parts & Labor)
Overall 2014 CarMD Index Score
(2013 Index Rating in Parenthesis)
- 1.HONDA $388.34 1.32 (0.97) Up from no. 5
- 2.HYUNDAI $306.341.33 (0.80) Down from no. 1
- 3.TOYOTA $486.93 1.48 (0.86) Down from no. 2
- 4.GM $329.82 1.80 (0.91) Down from no. 3
- 5.FORD $397.48 1.84 (1.04) Up from no. 6
- 6.CHRYSLER $303.38 2.11 (0.96) Down from no. 4
- 7.KIA $365.89 2.52 (1.56) Up from no. 8
- 8.NISSAN $470.39 2.53 (1.09) Down from no. 7
- 9.MAZDA $302.92 2.64 (not ranked in 2013)
- 10.BMW $355.08 3.00 (not ranked in 2013)
CarMD Ranks Top Manufacturers and Vehicles – 2-2-2
Honda's improved ranking is fueled by its combined low repair frequency and cost scores. Honda has 16 vehicles in the top 100, including the no.2-ranked 2012 Honda Civic. Half of the top 10 manufacturers (Honda, Ford, Kia, Mazda and BMW) improved their ranking. The other five (Hyundai, Toyota, GM, Chrysler and Nissan) dropped in ranking. All of the manufacturers Index Ratings scores increased, indicative of more frequent and costly check engine-related visits to the repair shop.
Mazda has the lowest average repair cost among the top 10-ranked manufacturers ($302.92). Toyota has the highest overall repair cost ($486.93). Toyota's average repair cost is impacted by a high frequency of costly catalytic converter (most common Toyota repair) and hybrid battery (top 25 most common) repairs.
Top Ranked Vehicles
For the fourth consecutive year, the top-ranked vehicle is a Toyota, with the 2012 Camry ranked as the most reliable vehicle for the second year in a row. Five sedans, two compacts, one SUV, one minivan and one hybrid make up 2014's top 10 list, marking the first time a minivan or hybrid ranks in the top 10. Toyota has five vehicles on the list, including the top-ranked Camry, rounded out by the 2011 Toyota Camry (no.4), 2010 Prius (no. 9) and 2010 Corolla (no. 10). Honda has two vehicles listed on this year's top 10, including the 2012 Honda Civic (no. 2) and 2011 Honda Odyssey (no. 6). Hyundai's 2012 Sonata (no.3) and 2013 Sonata (no. 5) are among these top ranked. Rounding out the list are the 2012 Kia Soul (no. 7) and 2012 Optima (no.8), marking the first time Kia has cracked the top 10 list. This top 100 list represents the top 10 percent of more than 1,000 different 2004 to 2014 model vehicles on the road.
The Index also ranks the top three vehicles by category: Compact, Minivan, Sedan, Full-Sized SUV, Wagon/Crossover, Truck and Luxury. For the second time since the CarMD Index has been published, Ford swept the truck category with the 2011 and 2010 F-150 and 2012 F-250 ranking no. 1, 2 and 3, respectively. Lexus has swept the luxury category with the 2010 Lexus ES (no. 1), 2008 Lexus RX (no. 2) and 2008 Lexus ES (no. 3).
Common Repairs by Brand/Make
Different vehicle makes tend to have a unique set of problems and common failures. The CarMD Vehicle Health Index reveals common problems and repairs by brand, providing a resource for vehicle owners as they maintain and repair their vehicles. "Replace catalytic converter(s)" accounted for 19.10 percent of Subaru repairs over the past year. "Replace ignition coil(s) represented 18.02 percent of Lincoln repairs. And "replace oxygen sensor(s)" accounted for 17.66 percent of Mitsubishi repairs and 14.64 percent of Hyundai repairs in 2013. In April, CarMD revealed that the no. 1 most common repair is "replace O2 sensor," accounting for 7.55 percent of all check engine-related repairs last year. O2 sensors measure the amount of unburned oxygen in the exhaust and tell a car's computer when either there is too much or not enough fuel mixed with oxygen for ideal operation. If a faulty O2 sensor is not repaired, the car's gas mileage can drop by as much as 40 percent.
The data for the 2014 CarMD® Vehicle Health Index™ Manufacturer & Vehicle Reliability Rankings was procured from CarMD's database of verified repairs. The 2014 Index analyzed repairs that apply to roughly 88 million model year 2004 to 2014 vehicles, taking place in the U.S. from Oct. 1, 2013 through Sept. 30, 2014. It is procured from actual in-use data and is not necessarily indicative of the future reliability of an individual vehicle, as new recalls, maintenance and upkeep can all affect a vehicle's check engine light health.