Money expert Clark Howard recommends that you buy a car that’s two or three years old because brand new cars begin to lose value the second they’re driven off the dealer’s lot.
With a used vehicle, you don’t eat that depreciation — a key benefit to buying a pre-owned car.
But whether you are purchasing new or used, you want to be sure you’re getting one of the most reliable cars or trucks on the road.
That’s exactly what J.D. Power measures in its annual vehicle dependability study, which examines how three-year-old cars perform and the number of problems owners report.
Take a look at J.D. Power’s most reliable car brands
For the eighth straight year, Lexus tops the 2019 J.D. Power U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, followed closely by corporate sibling Toyota, which this year shares the #2 spot with German automaker Porsche.
Rounding out the top five in this annual tally of the most reliable cars are Chevrolet and Buick.
The study noted that the reliability of three-year-old nameplates was up 4% year over year.
However, a trio of problem spots continue to plague manufacturers across the industry, according to Dave Sargent, Vice President of Global Automotive at J.D. Power.
“Automakers are wrestling with problems such as voice recognition, transmission shifts and battery failures,” Sargent says. “Flawless dependability is a determining factor in whether customers remain loyal to a brand, so manufacturers need to help customers who are currently experiencing vehicle problems and address these trouble spots on future models.”
You can see where all of the automakers landed here:
General Motors received five of J.D. Power’s 20 segment awards and Toyota scored four.
Check out the top models per segment to see if your vehicle — or one you’re thinking about buying — is among the most reliable cars and trucks on the road:
- Small car: Chevrolet Sonic, Hyundai Accent, Nissan Versa
- Midsize car: Toyota Camry, Buick Regal, Volkswagen Passat
- Compact car: Buick Verano, Toyota Corolla, Chevrolet Cruze
- Midsize sporty car: Dodge Challenger
- Compact Sporty Car: MINI Cooper, Mazda MX-5 Miata
- Midsize premium car: BMW 5 Series, Audi A7, Mercedes-Benz E-Class
- Compact multipurpose vehicle: Kia Soul, Toyota Prius v
- Large car: Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Impala, Toyota Avalon
- Compact premium car: Lexus ES, Audi A5, Audi A4
SUV, Van, Pickup segments
- Small SUV: Volkswagen Tiguan, Buick Encore, Kia Sportage
- Small premium SUV: Audi Q3, BMW X1
- Compact SUV: Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain, Toyota RAV4
- Compact premium SUV: BMW X3, Porsche Macan, Infiniti QX50
- Midsize pickup: Nissan Frontier, Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon
- Midsize SUV: Hyundai Sante Fe, Chevrolet Traverse, Toyota Highlander
- Midsize premium SUV: Lexus GX,Lexus RX, Mercedes-Benz GLE
- Minivan: Chrysler Town & Country, Toyota Sienna
- Large SUV: Ford Expedition, Chevrolet Tahoe, Chevrolet Suburban
- Large light-duty pickup: Toyota Tundra, Chevrolet Silverado
- Large heavy-duty pickup: Chevrolet Silverado HD, Ford Super Duty