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Korean reliability

Even if you’re a staunch advocate for fast, flashy, pricey and showy, at the end of the day, having something reliable is always an added plus. Who likes to live on the edge, always worrying if something you’re using will break down, fall apart, become a heap of nothing useful or worse yet, a heap that is costing you money.

In the car world this is still commonplace unfortunately. The industry has made great strides in terms of reliability but there is plenty of room to go. In 2019 when one thinks of reliability, certain countries leap out. The Japanese are typically first, followed by the Germans and Americans. Koreans are thrown in there, but likely fourth. However, this is all being flipped on its face according to new results/findings from a J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey revealing Koreans have gone from fourth to first.

Now, let’s clear up a couple things before anointing Seoul the next reliability capital of the universe. These studies are full of variables and measurements that are not standard across similar studies of their kind. Therefore, it’s hard to compare apples to apples at times. But in this case, the variables looked at were infotainment screens and advanced driver assistance features. Next the study zeroed in on the number of problems owners reported over their first three months owning a car. The Korean manufacturer Hyundai came out first with their Genesis brand, while Kia and other Hyundai brands followed suit. That’s right, a Korean top 3 sweep!

After Korea the next three spots went to the U.S., and Lexus/Toyota came in third. Below the bar are the Volvos, Audis, BMWs, Mercedes and VWs of the world. Not that these are unreliable brands in the least, but not as reliable in the categories analyzed. For those in the know the results are not surprising, however. Most have known the Koreans have been working hard to improve their rankings over the years and it has clearly paid off. Yet, the public does not seem to have caught on. Let’s now see if the P.R. push by Seoul can change all that.

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