US: JD Power quality study sees problems increase image

The wide audience annual J.D. Power Initial Quality Study has crowned GM as the automaker with most segment wins, but has also pointed out that the overall industry problems are on the rise.

The latest research, which is widely praised among the US consumer audience has revealed a rather unexpected decline of the overall quality of new cars, trucks and SUVs – which could be connected to the surprising huge number of recalls issued this year – that is, aside from GM’s safety and recall crisis.

The JD Power 2014 IQS has pointed out that automakers find it increasingly difficult to launch into production new models that are problem free, with many of the launch problems caused by the spree of high-tech gadgetry.

“Automakers are trying to give consumers the new features and technology they want without introducing additional quality problems into their vehicles,” said David Sargent, vice president of global automotive at J.D. Power. “However, almost all automakers are struggling to do this flawlessly with some consumers indicating that the technology is hard to understand, difficult to use, or simply does not always work as designed.”

The IQS also took some of the blame from the carmakers backyard and placed it on the weather – the very harsh winter this year in the US took its toll on a number of vehicles, plagued with engine and climate control systems failings.

The IQS was made up of the responses of 86,000 buyers who spent at least three months with their latest 2014-model car, truck or SUV.