As more North American drivers become interested in electric vehicles, auto industry analysts are evaluating the dominant automakers in this segment for the purpose of establishing reliability models. As of 2019, Tesla Motors was the clear market leader in this segment, but reliability ratings published by Consumer Reports indicate that the flagship Tesla Model S has lost consistency in terms of how mechanically reliable it can be considered.
Reliability is one of the most important factors automakers seek to establish for the purpose of staying competitive. It takes at least a decade for automakers to develop into reliable brands, which means that Tesla still has plenty of room for improvement. Becoming known as a reliable auto brand is a difficult process, and losing this distinction can be as easy as rolling out a single model that can be described as a lemon.
Thankfully for drivers, reliability is something that has progressively improved over the years, but some models stand out as having been some of the most reliable in history. If you are shopping for used vehicles, auto experts recommend that you consider the following models:
When General Motors struck a partnership with Toyota in the mid-1980s, executives failed to make this a marketing point. From 1984 to 1988, the Chevy Nova was essentially a Toyota Corolla, and the same situation applied to the Pontiac Vibe from 2002 to 2010. The Geo Prizm may not have looked like a Corolla, but its engine, drivetrain and chassis were built the Toyota way. It is not surprising to learn that many Japanese-American drivers often scan classified ads in the hopes of finding an old Geo Prizm in fair condition. The only problem with this model is that GM skimped on the interior, which is not very comfortable and somewhat fragile.
Pre-1996 Volvo Models
The Volvo Group is not just an automaker; it has a long history of manufacturing military vehicles for the Swedish armed forces, and this design philosophy was applied from the 1960s until 1996. Quality, safety, and reliability were the hallmarks of Volvo passenger cars until the brand was acquired by other automakers. If you find a rear-wheel drive Volvo station wagon on sale, you should be able to thousands of miles out of it as long as you stick to a maintenance schedule.
Seventh Generation Toyota Corolla
Owners of classic Corollas like to rhapsodize about their cars being more reliable than old Sherman tanks, but auto industry analysts will tell you that Toyota really hit its stride in 1992; this is when executives decided to add size and weight to all models, but a more important decision was made in terms of quality production. Japanese automakers have always been masters of building reliable cars through efficient management, but starting with the E100 Corolla class, the sourcing and manufacturing processes were thoroughly revamped to perfection. In Europe, Corollas were sold as Toyota Sprinters, and their reliability made them highly sought-after by German drivers.