Best and Worst Auto Makers Re: Recalls

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Welcome back to our Blog. This week, we’d like to examine those particular automobile manufacturers which stand out in either highest or lowest number of safety recalls. In this study, we are not focusing on any one particular manufacturer; rather, the industry as a whole. What follows is a recap and executive summary of information presented by the research done by Woburn, MA based automotive research firm iSeeCars, and subsequently presented on

According to iSeeCars, the industry average during this 31-year period was 1,115 vehicles recalled per 1,000 vehicles sold. (Some vehicles were recalled for multiple reasons). For the report, NHTSA’s recall data for each manufacturer from January 1985 to September 2016 was reviewed, then a ‘recall rate’ was derived by dividing the total number of vehicles affected by the number of new vehicles sold during the same period.

The iSeeCars report had mixed news for German automaker Volkswagen Group. The good news is that Volkswagen’s luxury car brand, Porsche, saw the lowest recall rate during a 31-year review of recall activity by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). The bad news is Volkswagen’s non-luxury brand had the highest recall rate during the same period. Porsche had 531 recalls per 1,000 new vehicles sold between 1985 and 2016, while Volkswagen had 1,805 recalls per 1,000 vehicles sold during that same period. The report does not include recalls related to Volkswagen’s emissions cheating scandal, which will likely worsen Volkswagen’s rating.

The report also had some bad news for Tesla, a relative newcomer among automakers. Tesla had the highest rate of ‘severe’ (those problems that could cause death, injury, collisions, fire, or accidents) recalls. However, the report also had several bright spots for Tesla. iSeeCars found that the electric automaker was the most proactive of all companies because it initiated recalls based on its own findings.

Here’s how the 18 major vehicle brands ranked according to their recall rate between between January 1985 and September 2016, from lowest to highest: Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, KIA, Tesla, Mazda, GM, Subaru, Toyota, Nissan, Jaguar Land Rover, Mitsubishi, Ford, Volvo, BMW, Hyundai, Honda, Volkswagen.

Please recall what we’ve stated in previous blogs: if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner. In many cases, the vehicle gets bought back by the manufacturer, and they may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation. If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand.

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