On the Motor Trend blog , Todd Lassa waxes poetic about J.D. Power and As sociates’ top performing vehicles for 2008 (the ranking is based on the number of problems for every 100 vehicles). Todd reports that the top ten are Porsche, Infiniti, Lexus, Mercedes, Toyota, Mercury, Honda, Ford, Jaguar, and Audi.
Over at automotive.com’s blog, Joel Arellano used the same J.D. Powers and Associates data to jump on the Ford bandwagon, noting that the company improved more quickly than the industry average, and that Ford is the only manufacturer that’s shown steady improvement since 2004. He also exclaimed that three Ford models merited the highest rankings: Lincoln Navigator, Ford E-Series, and Mazda MX5 Miata.
That sounds all well and good, but Todd, Joel, and J.D. Power may have lost their bearings (if not their marbles). If Porsche is ranked number one, with “only” 87 problems per 100 vehicles, their definition of “quality” escapes me. Of course, the bottom-ranked manufacturer, Jeep, had almost twice as many (167 problems per 100 vehicles), but still…. 87 problems seems like about 87 too many. Do manufacturers (and those living in the rarefied air of J.D. Power and Associates) even live in the real world? If you’re putting out that much money for a Porsche (or a Jeep, for that matter), you have the right to expect that the vehicle is problem-free. Hey Todd and Joel, how about a zero tolerance policy?