Steer clear of these 10 least reliable cars

|
Steer clear of these 10 least reliable cars
Image Credit: © Antoniodiaz | Dreamstime.com
Team Clark is adamant that we will never write content influenced by or paid for by an advertiser. To support our work, we do make money from some links to companies and deals on our site. Learn more about our guarantee here.
Advertisement

When shopping for a new or used car, some of the most important questions you can ask are, ‘How long will it last?’ ‘How reliable is it?’ and ‘What is the total cost of ownership?’

Consumer Reports’ latest ranking of the most and least reliable new cars told us about the reliability of newer cars, but what about cars that have been around longer than 10 years? 

If you want to make it to the 250,000 mile club (or the 3 million mile club, for that matter) and really stretch your dollar, you’ll want to know which car brands have lasted over the long haul — and which ones to avoid.

Read more: New ranking: The most and least reliable new cars

MojoMotors.com crunched the numbers to come up with a list of the 10 least reliable car brands over 19 years. And what they found is quite interesting.

Although Lexus is on the list of most unreliable brands, newer versions of the Lexus are more reliable and made it to the very top of Consumer Reports’ list of most reliable cars. Also, it’s important to note that car brands can have great variations between different models. So, it’s critical to look at the full picture when deciding on a car for yourself. 

MojoMotors.com noted: ‘…while this data is a great way to understand how vehicle prices correlate to reliability, no study of used car reliability and its value is perfect. This is a make-specific study, not a breakdown of models, trims or years. There can be a large variation between model trims and there are many factors that go into the price of a car.’

How they get this data? MojoMotors.com analyzed the selling price compared to mileage of over 500,000 cars; model years 1995 – 2014.

‘Using a linear regression model, we were able to calculate the dollars of value lost as mileage increased and ultimately, the number of theoretical miles where a car lost all value. We were surprised to find many top luxury brands in this list – but we have our theories,’ said Michael Milstein, Business Intelligence Manager at Mojo Motors. 

At the other end of the spectrum, in MojoMotors.com’s list of most reliable cars, Toyota was #1 at 210,705 miles until worthless. 

Here are 10 cars to steer clear of if you want your car to last at least at least 200,000 miles. 

Read more: The 30 best cars of 2016

10. Volkswagen – 170,799 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

With the recent issues Volkswagen has experienced related to its cars, it may be no surprise that this brand’s cars did not quite make it to 200,000 miles. 

According to MojoMotors.com, the worst model was the Touareg, the brand’s premium SUV.

9. Lexus – 170,440 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

Though Lexus made this list with it’s LS model over the past 19 years, it did make the list of most reliable cars with its newer model vehicles. Perhaps we can give Lexus points for the most improvement. And, since the company shares the same technologies as Toyota, Toyota might have rubbed off on Lexus making the brand much more reliable as of recent.

8. Hyundai- 169,123 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

Also as of recent, Hyundai really is holding it’s own. But as for models older than 2010, MojoMotors.com advises to avoid says to avoid — especially the Azera. On average, older Hyundai models tap out at 169,123 miles. 

7. Chrysler – 166,076 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

Chrysler is a brand that hasn’t quite been known for reliability, so if you’re looking for a long-term car it might be one to avoid. Specifically, MojoMotors.com says to avoid the 300 sedan and the Town & Country minivan. 

6. Kia – 163,536 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Tony Bock / Getty Images)

Though the Kia brand has become much more reliable recently (and even makes it to the 2016 list of most reliable cars), Kia’s Sedona model taps out at an average 163,536 miles.

Read more: 5 things to know before buying a used car

5. Buick – 157,164 miles

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

Buick appears to have successfully rebranded itself in the style of Matthew McConaughey recently, appealing to a new generation of drivers. But according to MojoMotors.com, you’ll want to bypass the 2005-2009 LaCrosse, due to an aging engine and platform. If you stick to the 2010 LaCrosse and beyond though, you should be good to go. 

4. Cadillac – 156,837 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: David Cooper​ / Getty Images)

Cadillac is a strong luxury brand — but, older Cadillacs such as the SRX hurt the brand’s long term reliability scores, so be sure to avoid those models.

3. Audi – 153,120 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Dimitrios Kambouris​ / Getty Images)

For least reliable Audi brands, be sure to avoid the Q7, which shares many of its components with Volkswagen’s least reliable Touareg. In lieu of this car, you might want to take a look at the Q5, one of Audi’s most reliable models. 

2. BMW – 151,950 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bloomberg / Getty Images)

Older luxury brands like Mercedes, Audi and BMW are at the top of their game in the first few years. But as they age, expensive parts wear out and need replacement. MojoMotors.com ranks the 7 series as the most unreliable Beamer, BMW’s most expensive luxury sedan.

1. Mercedes-Benz – 147,032 miles 

7 cars with the highest maintenance costs

(Image credit: Bryan Mitchell​ / Getty Images)

Rated #1 on the list of MojoMotors.com most unreliable cars, the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class SUVs are among the least reliable, while the newer GLK-Class SUV and the full-size S-Class sedan, are some of the brand’s most reliable models. 

Read more: 6 used cars under $12,000 that get 40 miles per gallon

Advertisement
Charis Brown About the author:
Charis Brown is the Senior Deals Editor for ClarkDeals.com. Her favorite discount store is Nordstrom Rack, where she once bought something for $.01! She and her husband Justin paid off $27,000 of debt in 11 months and now live debt-free.
View More Articles
  • Show Comments Hide Comments