Worst Automakers of 2016

04.15.16 - Fiat Logo

While we put a concerted effort to creating lists of great accomplishments in the automotive world there are some instances when looking at those who prowl the bottom of the industry are worth the time and effort. Using information from Consumer Reports, automakers are judged based upon the lineup by ranking road test scores, predicted reliability, safety and owner satisfaction scores. With this information an educated ranking of the worst automakers can be accomplished, showing you what automakers have work to do to make it out of the basement and become one of the leaders in the industry, which some of these names have been in the past.

Nissan – Starting off our list in the tenth position Nissan has made its way to this list of bottom feeders because there are two transmissions that have been giving the brand some serious problems. The reliability of the lineup is around the industry average and the road test score wasn’t too bad either. While many consumers have trusted Nissan over the years, and they still have many products that we can all admire, be aware of the problems stemming from the transmissions if you are considering a Nissan product for your next vehicle.

Infiniti – The luxury brand from Nissan experiences some of the same problems as the parent company. The number of models that are recommended from Infiniti is at a paltry twenty and the road test scores were below average. Infiniti has had a long history of excellence in the automotive world and should see a change in direction if the transmission issues that are plaguing it and Nissan are corrected. Until that time you should be wary of Infiniti products as well and do your research regarding their transmissions and what they plan to do to correct these problems.

GMC – The brand that is known for the rugged SUVs and trucks finds itself in the positon of the eighth worst automaker according to Consumer Reports. This is based on a below average reliability score and a low road test score. Only seventeen of the GMC models are recommended for you to drive. Does this mean there aren’t goo GMC models for you to choose; not at all? It’s important to remember with all these automakers there are several models that are recommended which means those are the ones you should choose when you go shopping for a vehicle.

Cadillac – This may come as a surprise as Cadillac has been working to change its image, but the testing done by Consumer Reports have landed this brand in the seventh spot when it comes to the worst automakers. Only twenty-five percent of the lineup is recommended and the reliability score was one of the worst possible. As for the road test scores, those were amazing for a brand that had so many other negatives. If you find one of the quarter of the lineup vehicles that had a great road test you will have a great car to drive and enjoy, just do your homework first.

Dodge – With FCA struggling as a whole and RAM no longer being part of Dodge this is not a real surprise. The sixth position may even be high for Dodge, but seventeen percent of the lineup is recommended for driving even though the lineup also rated one of the worst reliability scores possible. Similar to Cadillac, Dodge had some great road test scores, but the question is how many of those good road tests scores are part of the seventeen percent that were approved and recommended for driving? That is an answer you want before buying a Dodge vehicle.

Chrysler – Another name that doesn’t come as a surprise as it seems FCA is mired with vehicles that troll the bottom of most lists. At the fifth worst spot on the market Chrysler doesn’t have a single model that was recommended and offers a terrible reliability score. This didn’t help when it came to the road test scores that were some of the lowest on the lineup. It seems FCA needs to do a lot to rebuild and improve some of the brands and names that have carried its success for so many years already.

Land Rover – This may come as a surprise, but its vehicles are rates well below average for predicted reliability and Consumer Reports could not recommend any of the models on the list. We all know Land Rover to be a brand that is built to be off road, but with more and more buyers driving these vehicles on the road exclusively Land Rover needs to make some changes to give us vehicles that have great on road manners as well as the exceptional off road performance we have come to love. For this list, Land Rover came in fourth.

Mitsubishi – This brand has been rated as Japan’s worst automaker and it’s really not a surprise. Boring cars are supported by reasonably good SUVs which make for a doomed recipe. No models were recommended by Consumer Reports and the road tests were awful, but Mitsubishi does have an average predicted reliability score which bodes well for this brand. Now if they could find a way to bring some vehicles that Consumer Reports will like and recommend this once strong brand many come out of the bargain basement area of the industry which is very close to seeing this brand gone from the US lineup.

Jeep – The second worst brand on this list is Jeep. That comes as no surprise at all as it seems all the FCA names are falling short. Jeep has similar issues to Land Rover with vehicles that are made to be driven off roads and not on the roads at all. With a terrible predicted reliability score and no recommended models to go along with the low road test scores it’s a wonder Jeep didn’t end up at the very bottom. Of course there are Jeep models we all know and love, but none of them are great on the road, which is something you understand when you buy a Jeep.

Fiat – In the number one position as the worst automaker for 2016 we find Fiat. This means four out of ten of the names on this list came from FCA, which should be an embarrassing shame for FCA. For Fiat not even one model was recommended and the worst possible predicted reliability score was achieved to be coupled with an extremely low road test score. Does this mean you shouldn’t buy any FCA products; not at all, but it does mean you should do your research and know what you can expect from vehicles that are from the bottom dwelling brands.

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