Survey shows that Glitchy reduces the reliability of electric SUVs


Electric SUVs are generally one of the least reliable vehicles on the road, but it’s not the batteries or electric motors that power them.

Instead, it’s down to electronics that are prone to malfunction including climate control systems and electrical equipment, according to the annual subscriber reliability survey conducted by Consumer Reports.

Electric SUVs were the least reliable category in the annual survey of magazine and website subscribers who jointly own more than 300,000 vehicles. Tesla’s X and Y models, the Audi E-Tron and the Volkswagen ID.4 were among the vehicles indicated as having problems in areas other than the electric powertrain.

In contrast, the compact and gasoline-electric hybrids led the way by the Toyota Prius and Prius Prime and the Honda Insight as the most reliable category, said Jake Fisher, senior director of automotive testing at Consumer Reports. know.

Overall, Japanese brands led by Lexus, Mazda, Toyota and Infiniti took eight of the top 10 spots in the reliability survey. General Motors’ Buick brand is fifth and BMW’s Mini is 10th.

Ford’s Lincoln luxury brand ranked last out of 28 with Tesla, Jeep, Genesis and Volkswagen in the top five.

Electric vehicles have fewer moving parts, making them more reliable than gas-powered vehicles, says Fisher. However, electric SUVs tend to be the higher-priced luxury vehicles these days, and these vehicles have all the latest technology that can cause trouble, he said.

“The powertrain wasn’t the problem,” Fisher said. Instead, electric SUVs are often equipped with electric door handles, electrically activated climate control vents and other features. “By bringing all these new technologies to these early-user mobiles, there will be more problems associated with them.”

Fisher said electric vehicles could be more reliable than gas-powered cars as manufacturers correct the flaws in their features.

The Lexus GX SUV was the most reliable model in the survey, followed by Kia’s Niro electric vehicle, Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid, Prius hybrid and Cadillac XT5 sedan.

The least reliable were the Mercedes GLE, Ford Explorer, Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500, and Chevrolet Corvette, according to the survey.

Fisher said owners are reporting more problems with complex 8, 9 and 10-speed transmissions designed to save fuel, especially in some Hyundai, Kia, Subaru and Toyota models.

Mr. Fisher said that Tesla, the world’s leading electric vehicle brand, was ranked near the bottom in reliability due to reports of body hardware issues, water leaks, trunk not closing and disappearances due to vehicle failure. weather, Fisher said. He said there were also problems with the new heat pump system to heat the passenger compartment and defrost the windshield. Tesla’s Model 3 sedan, with average reliability, was the only model recommended by Consumer Reports.

Traditionally, Lexus, Toyota’s luxury brand, has always topped the survey because it’s really cautious when it comes to new engines, transmissions and technology, Fisher said. The brand was one of the last to add Apple CarPlay to its vehicles, and the transition to an eight-speed transmission has been slow, he said.

Fisher says reliability is more important than ever given the shortage of spare parts for troubleshooting. “Buying a reliable vehicle can help ensure that you’ll be on the road when you need to and don’t have to worry about getting stuck waiting for parts to fix,” he says.

The survey is used by Consumer Reports to predict reliability. It’s based on overall reliability for the 2019, 2020 and 2021 model years, for vehicles that haven’t been redesigned.

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