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Kia the best quality new car brand in 2020 study as Tesla debuts in last place - unofficially

Kia has been recognised as the best-quality new-vehicle brand in the US.

The J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study (IQS) has been released in the US, with Kia and Dodge setting the benchmark for quality among all new-vehicle brands, while Tesla unofficially debuted in last place.

Kia finished in first position for the sixth year in a row, while one of its South Korean siblings, Genesis, set the standard for premium new-vehicle brands for a fourth consecutive year.

The reason why Tesla’s debut was unofficial was its decision to not give J.D. Power permission to survey to its owners in 15 states, which was required for an official result.

That said, J.D. Power did manage to collect a large enough sample of surveys from owners in the other 35 states, which allowed it to calculate Tesla’s result, albeit unofficially.

The 2020 IQS looked at issues found by owners of new MY20 vehicles during the first 90 days of ownership, with quality determined by the number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100). So, the lower the score the better.

For reference, the average PP100 for the study was 166, with 14 of the 32 new-vehicle brands involved managing to exceed it (see the results in the table below).

Multimedia systems were responsible for the most common issues, accounting for almost a fourth of problems. Touchscreens, built-in satellite navigation/voice control, and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto and Bluetooth connectivity were among the top complaints.

J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study (IQS)

RankingBrandProblems per 100 vehicles (PP100)
1Kia136
1Dodge136
2Ram141
2Chevrolet141
3Genesis142
4Mitsubishi148
5Buick150
6GMC151
7Volkswagen152
8Hyundai153
9Jeep155
10Lexus159
11Nissan161
12Cadillac162
12Infiniti173
14Ford174
14Mini174
15BMW176
16Toyota177
16Honda177
17Lincoln182
18Mazda184
19Acura185
20Porsche186
21Subaru187
22Chrysler189
23Jaguar190
24Mercedes-Benz202
25Volvo210
26Audi225
27Land Rover228
28Tesla*250

*Unofficial rank and result