Oct. 24 (UPI) -- Tesla, Cadillac and Volvo brand vehicles were at the bottom of a new reliability survey released Wednesday by Consumer Reports.
The annual survey, based on over 500,000 owner reviews, ranked Tesla tied for 27th of 29 brands in reliability. Its relatively poor showing was due to the new Model S luxury sedan, as well as by Tesla's constant upgrading of components.
"The Model S is not an aging model. It's constantly being redesigned under the skin," said Consumer Reports' Jake Fisher. "Tesla's capability to make instant software updates indicates its cars experience "these growing pains differently than traditional car companies.
"While Tesla hasn't changed the Model S in terms of how it looks, it keeps changing the vehicle underneath, so the reliability fluctuates."
Model S suspensions have been a particular focus for improvement, and Tesla said suspension problems have been reduced by 65 percent since last year.
The Consumer Reports list was led, in order, by Lexus, Toyota, Mazda and Subaru. Kia and Infiniti were tied for fifth place. Audi, BMW, Mini and Hyundai complete the top 10.
Seven of the top 10 brands are made by Japanese or South Korean manufacturers, with Mazda improving by nine places over its 2017 position. The highest-ranking vehicle from a U.S.-based manufacturer was Ford, in 18th place.
Cadillacs "drive so well" and can compete with luxury import cars, Fisher said, but have reliability issues. The company, a division of General Motors, recently moved its headquarters from New York City to Warren, Mich., to be closer to GM's tech center, in part to address quality issues.
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