Consumer Reports published a ranking of vehicle reliability, and the results are not good for EVs and plug-in hybrids. Electric vehicles have 79 percent more maintenance issues than traditional vehicles, while plug-in hybrids have 146 percent more problems. The troubles show the industry’s struggles with the new technology as the planet experiences record temperatures and scientists warn of approaching climate catastrophe. The survey polled CR’s members about issues with their cars from the past year, gathering data on 330,000 vehicles. The data included models from 2000 to 2023, alongside some 2024 models. CR studied 20 “trouble areas,” from minor issues like squeaky brakes to more serious problems with the transmission, engine, or EV battery. The publication combined the data with track testing, owner satisfaction survey results, and safety info to assign each brand a numerical score out of 100.
Non-plugin hybrids scored well, with 26 percent fewer issues than traditional vehicles. CR highlighted Lexus’ UX and NX Hybrid, and Toyota’s Camry Hybrid, Highlander Hybrid and RAV4 Hybrid as the most reliable brands in that space. But plug-in hybrids did not fare as well, with 146 percent more problems than traditional vehicles. Electric vehicles also had mediocre average scores, with electric pickups scoring the worst. Lexus came out on top among EV brands and Toyota also did well. Tesla had middle of the pack scores, with its EV powertrains faring better than those from other automakers.
Asian automakers enjoyed the highest average scores in the survey, followed by European companies then US brands.