Other Editorials

Toyota is slipping, Consumer Reports says

MSN Money Staff
Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Magazine won't automatically recommend redesigned Toyotas, citing below-average quality in new models. Ford improves dramatically.

Consumer Reports magazine reported today that the quality of cars made by Toyota, long the benchmark for reliability among automotive brands, had slipped so much that the organization no longer will automatically recommend them.

Releasing the results of its 2007 annual Car Reliability Survey today in Detroit, the magazine said two high-profile models, the top-selling Camry V-6 and the four-wheel-drive Tundra pickup, both redesigned this year, scored below average. Consumer Reports won't recommend any model scoring below average to its readers.

Typically, Consumer Reports will recommend a vehicle only if it has at least one year of reliability data. New and redesigned Toyota models had been exempted from that standard because of the company's record. The magazine said today it no longer will recommend any new or redesigned Toyota-built models without reliability data on a specific design.

Now, only Honda and Subaru have that distinction. Despite its emerging problems, Toyota, which also makes Lexus and Scion brand cars, still ranks third in reliability among all automakers, behind Honda, which also makes Acuras, and Subaru. The top-ranked domestic brand is General Motors' Buick.

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