Most Reliable Cars in India : 2016

Vehicle Dependability Study : 2016

Skoda Rapid and Mahinda XUV500 have made their debut in the list of Most Reliable Cars in India. Alto, Brio, Polo & Etios continue to reign over their respective segments.

Based on J.D Power Asia Pacific’s 2016 Vehicle Dependability Study, this article is going to list the most reliable cars across eight vehicle segments from Entry Compact to SUV.

The 9th year of the study evaluated different cars based on the problems experienced by car owners during the first 2.5 to 3.5 years, i.e. just around the time warranty period lapses. We have often heard people complaining how goods are only as good as their warranty, and start acting up as soon as the warranty lapses. That does not seem to be the case with cars, since nearly half of us Indians do not experience any problems with our car during the first 3.5 years.

Taking into account 169 different problem symptoms, the study compares the number of problems reported per 100 vehicles (PP100) for different cars. The cars with the least score rank highest, signifying that they are the most reliable cars in their category in the long run.

Vehicles in India are operated under a variety of road and weather conditions that lead to varying degrees of quality deterioration which affects overall owner satisfaction and word-of-mouth recommendations. It is therefore important for manufacturers to understand and minimize this fact by designing products to not only achieve high levels of initial quality but also attain higher levels of longer-term reliability and durability – Shantanu Nandi Majumdar, Director at J.D. Power, Singapore.


Key Findings

The quality of vehicles that automakers have been building is improving year after year as is evident from the below findings:-

  1. Overall vehicle dependability has seen remarkable progress with reported problems down to 185 PP100 in 2016 from 206 PP100 in 2015 & 218 PP100 in 2014. Even unexpected vehicular repairs are down to 27%, an improvement of 10% from 2014 .
  2. Car owners continue to experience more problems with diesel cars as compared to their petrol peers, but this gap is gradually becoming more and more slender. It’s down to 27 PP100 this year as compared to last year’s 29PP100.
  3. However, good news for both petrol & diesel fans is that unexpected repairs continue to drop down at a brisk rate. This figure is down to 29% & 25% for diesel & petrol cars respectively, compared to the previous year’s numbers of 41% & 35%.
  4. 64% or almost two-thirds of car owners who never had to visit the workshop in lieu of unexpected repairs would readily recommend the same model to their pals. Nearly half or 46% of owners having the most reliable vehicles claim that they would definitely purchase their next car of the same make. It is an indication that companies which invest more in building trustworthy cars are also investing in cultivating an entire class of loyal customers.
  5. Development in the automobile niche is evident with new launched models having 40 PP100 fewer problems than their counterparts who have already been in the market for a long period.
  6. In a strange turn of events, first-time buyers have faced fewer problems (177 PP100) as compared to repeat buyers (197 PP100). Beginner’s luck seems to be working it’s magic in the automotive sector.

Also read : Previous year’s list of Most Dependable Cars In India

The Most Reliable Cars –

The most reliable cars are subject to evaluation across nine problem areas, namely- vehicle exterior, driving experience, features, audio and entertainment, controls and displays (FCD), seats, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), vehicle interior, engine, and transmission. This comprehensive, all-encompassing study has yielded the following list:-

Entry Compact : Maruti Suzuki Alto 800

Competing against the likes of Tata Nano (183 PP100) & Hyundai Eon (189 PP100), the average Alto user faces only 156 PP100 as compared to the segment average of 184 PP100. It is the most reliable car in the entry compact segment. The people friendly brand name of Maruti only serves to accentuate it’s appeal.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 starting from only Rs 1.6 lacs on Spinny
Alto 800 : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

With 156 PP100 as compared to the segment average of 184, the Alto 800 is the Most Reliable Car in the Entry Compact Segment

Also read: How Maruti Suzuki Alto is an Ideal Family Car.

Compact : Maruti Suzuki Alto/ Alto K10

Other carmakers might as well kneel over and give Maruti a bow along with a round of applause for dominating these budget compact segments. The Alto K10 has overwhelmed Hyundai’s i10 (158 PP100) & Santro (187 PP100) with a mere 135 PP100 to become the most reliable car in the compact segment. This is quite a hoot when compared to the segment average of 184 PP100.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 starting from only Rs 1.7 lacs on Spinny
Alto : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

Maruti seems to have gotten it right with both the Alto variants being the Most Reliable in their Respective Segments.

Also read : The Alto K10 is among the 5 Best Automatic Transmission Cars in India Under 5 Lakhs

Upper Compact: Honda Brio

Someone needs to go & ask Honda for Brio’s recipe. With a meager 82 PP100, the Honda Brio is undisputedly the most reliable car in the upper compact segment with Maruti Ritz (97 PP100) & Toyota Etios Liva (117 PP100) being close seconds. It is not only the most dependable in it’s segment but also the most dependable car overall with the lowest PP100. Considering that all the 3 cars are well below the segment average of 165 PP100, it is safe to say that Honda, Maruti & Toyota are setting new standards of reliability which other automakers will find hard to best.

Honda Brio starting from only Rs 2.9 lacs on Spinny
Honda Brio : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

With a mere 85 PP100, Brio is not only the Most Reliable Car in it’s segment, but is the Most Dependable Car out there.

Also read : Brio is among the 7 Honda Cars under 7 Lakhs

Premium Compact Segment : Volkswagen Polo

It is only justified that the country which gave the world it’s first car has it’s name on this list. The Volkswagen Polo is not only a great buy for it’s regal comfort, or even the fact that it is among the safest cars in India, but also because it is the most reliable car in the Premium Compact Segment (136 PP100). It did beat the Hyundai i20 (173 PP100), Maruti Suzuki Swift (198 PP100) as well as the segment average (178 PP100) by a handsome margin.

Volkswagen Polo starting from only Rs 2 lacs on Spinny
Volkswagen Polo : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

From the Stables of German Automaker Volkswagen, the Polo with 136 PP100 has left it’s competitors well behind. Das Auto.

Also read : Volswagen Polo is among the Top 10 Safest Cars Under 5 Lacs

Entry Midsize Segment – Toyota Etios

The segment average might have actually gone up to 208 PP100 (from last year’s 184 PP100), but Toyota Etios’s command over the the most reliable car in the Entry Midsize Segment remains the same. Problems faced by vehicle owners is down to 116 PP100 as compared to the previous year’s 158 PP100. This zeal for betterment is what makes Toyota such a dependable trademark to have on your car. A close second was the Honda Amaze with 130 PP100.

Toyota Etios starting from only Rs 2.55 lacs on Spinny
Toyota Etios : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

On the whole, Problems faced by Vehicle Owners in this Segment have gone up, but the Reigning Champion Etios continues to dominate the Segment with lower than before problems at 116 PP100.

Also read : The hue and cry around crossovers in Crossovers and All the Fuss

Midsize : Skoda Rapid

Finally, the first variation from last year’s list, the Skoda Rapid (100 PP100) has just managed to nudge past last year’s champion, Honda City (109 PP100) & Volkswagen Vento (118 PP1000) to become the  the most reliable car in the Midsize Segment. Worth noting is that the Midsize Segment is actually the most dependable with the segment average at 135 PP100 only.

Skoda Rapid starting from only Rs 3.8 lacs on Spinny
Skoda Rapid : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

Skoda Rapid has emerged as a Winner with 100 PP100 in a Closely Contested Race with Honda CIty (109 PP100) & Volkswagen Vento (118 PP100).

Also read : Look for adventure this rainy season with 5 Places to Travel in Your Car This Monsoon

MPV Segment : Toyota Innova

This segment has seen the closest competition for the top position. The last year saw Ertiga and Innova both vying for the top position tied at 177 PP100. This year, Innova has managed to break the deadlock to become the most reliable car in the MPV segment, just managing to do so with 118 PP100 as compared to Ertiga’s 127 PP100. Both MPV’s are however a whole league above the rest with Xylo coming in at third position with a whooping 245 PP100. The segment average stands at 218 PP100.

Toyota Innova starting from only Rs 5 lacs on Spinny.
Toyota Innova : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

Innova (118 PP100) has managed to just Break the Deadlock with Ertiga (127 PP100) to Become the Indisputable Champion of the MUV Segment

Also read : Which other 7 seaters made it to the list of The 5 Best 7 Seater Cars in India

SUV Segment : Mahindra XUV 500

Mahindra again rules the SUV Segment like last year, this time with Mahindra XUV 500 (171 PP100) as the most reliable car in the segment. Renault Duster (194 PP100) sped past last year’s conqueror, Mahindra Scorpio to finish at second. When other cars have been reporting better scores, Scorpio has actually fallen from it’s pedestal and is down to 282 PP100 (from last year’s 254 PP100) which is well below the segment average of 210 PP100.

Mahindra XUV 500 starting from only Rs 7.7 lacs on Spinny
XUV 500 : Most Reliable Car | Spiny Drive

Mahindra’s 2.2-litre Beast with 171 PP100 has just overtaken the Renault Duster (194 PP100) to become the Most Reliable SUV this year.

Also read : The Mechanical Beasts of Jurassic World

Here’s an overview of the J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2016 Vehicle Dependability Study to see how different cars stack up against each other.

Most Reliable Cars : Spinny Drive

J.D. Power Asia Pacific 2016 Vehicle Dependability Study