The Most Reliable Cars Of 2021

Jan 13, 2022
Car Insurance
By Staff writer

Buying a vehicle is often a long-term investment, so it's only right to find the most reliable car of all. No one wants a car that breaks down every few kilometres, especially when you’re driving down the long, scenic roads of NZ. But, what does it really take for a car to be reliable? 

It’s easy to go with the safest option of choosing the newly released model in the market because they have the least chance of getting faulty. However, this isn’t always the case for all manufacturers.

Reliability is measured depending on how unlikely you’ll encounter a problem with your vehicle, which isn’t a guarantee with new vehicles. 

How is the reliability of a car brand scored?

American data firm Consumer Reports released the 2021 Auto Reliability Data report, covering over 320,000 vehicles over the last 12 months. Each member is sent a survey and asked to complete a set of questions regarding their experience with their vehicle.

They need to assess about 17 aspects of their car including soft brake pedals, messy interior trims, misaligned tailgates, out-of-warranty repairs, inconsistent four-wheel-drive systems, and more. All types of vehicles from all manufacturers are included in the study like hybrids, plug-in hybrid (PHEV) vehicles, and high-end electric SUVs.

The reliability score is measured on a 0-to-100-point scale, with an average rating between 41 and 60 points. For a brand to be included in the ranking, at least two models from the survey data are needed.

Of course, Consumer Reports' survey method is not 100% perfect as they also rely on car owners reporting on issues. There can be instances where car owners acknowledge minor issues with a vehicle and weigh it the same as a more significant problem. However, it does serve as a good baseline for a quick reliability check.

Read: Top 5 Car Insurance Providers In Auckland

List of top car brands in 2021

For 2021, Lexus secured the top spot with a score of 76 points. This is a big step up from the car company, which was in third place in 2020. While none of their models is particularly outstanding, all of them scored high on overall average reliability 

Japanese car manufacturers, Mazda and Toyota, score second and third, scoring 75 and 71 respectively. They’ve been consistently manufacturing excellent vehicles, as their rankings have always been high.

Glimp_Car-Insurance.png

For the complete list of the most reliable car brands of 2021, check this list.

2021 ranking

Car brand

Average score

2020 ranking

1

Lexus

76

3

2

Mazda

75

1

3

Toyota

71

2

4

Infiniti

69

10

5

Buick

66

4

5=

Honda

66

5

5=

Subaru

66

6

8

Acura

64

N/A

9

Nissan

63

13

10

Mini

60

23

11

Hyundai

54

7

11=

Chrysler

54

N/A

13

Porsche

52

11

14

Chevrolet

48

18

15

Audi

47

15

15=

Cadillac

47

22

17

BMW

45

13

18

Ford

44

23

19

Kia

43

16

20

Volvo

42

19

What are the best vehicle models?

Instead of brands, some Kiwis like to be particular with the model instead. Buick Envision, Chevrolet Trailblazer, Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, GMC Sierra 2500HD, Chrysler 300, Ford Bronco Sport, Ford Mustang Mach-E, and Ford Ranger were among the top models of 2021.

Some of the most improved models include:

  • Acura MDX
  • Acura RDX
  • Acura TLX
  • Audi Q7
  • BMW X3
  • Chevrolet Blazer
  • Chevrolet TrailBlazer
  • Chevrolet Traverse
  • Ford Bronco Sport
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E
  • Ford Ranger
  • Genesis G70
  • Honda Odyssey
  • Honda Passport
  • Infiniti QX50
  • Kia Niro EV
  • Nissan Rogue Sport
  • Ram 1500
  • Volkswagen Atlas
  • Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport
  • Volkswagen Jetta
  • Volvo XC60

When it comes to the types of vehicles that most see as reliable, the wider car segment — including sedans, hatchbacks, wagons, convertibles, and coupes — placed first with a score of 57. SUVs placed second with a score of 50, while utes and minivans placed third at 43.

If you’re for a bang-for-the-buck vehicle purchase for this year, check out these models and see if they tick all the right boxes.

What should you consider when buying a car?

While you already have a list of excellent cars to consider, it’s still important to know the basics of buying a new car. This guarantees that you end with a car that matches your needs, lifestyle, and budget. After all, you’re bound to use and pay for it for a long time.

Read: Electric Vehicles NZ: How To Get EV Insurance And Assistance

Consider all your financing options

A vehicle purchase isn’t cheap, and you’re also bound to pay for it for a very long time. It’s important to consider all your financing options, and check which fits your budget, lifestyle, and financial situation. Talk with a financial advisor if you need professional advice.

Read: Driving In NZ? Here's How To Save Money On Fuel

Test drive before purchasing

Before purchasing a vehicle, you’ve probably looked it up on the internet and searched countless reviews. However, it may feel very different when you’re actually driving it yourself. There may be nuances that you have to take note of, which isn’t something you can’t grasp when watching online reviews.

Know where to buy spare parts

When your car breaks down, most repairs are covered by your insurance provider. However, having easy and direct access to spare parts for when your vehicle breaks down can be very helpful. This way, you can have your vehicle repaired quickly. You don’t need to wait for several days or weeks to get it fixed.

You can easily get a Mechanical Breakdown Insurance to cover expensive replacement and repairs.

Read: The Ultimate Guide To Mechanical Breakdown Insurance in New Zealand (MBI)

Get covered by a car insurance plan

Once you’ve purchased a vehicle, the next step is to find the best car insurance. Whatever happens to your car, you can always rest assured it’s protected. There are different types of car insurance plans available in the market. Make sure you get the best one using glimp’s free comparison tool.

+
Karyn Swallow , 2022-03-14

Extremely easy and fast to show suitable and economical choices, and also special promotions , I used it to find the best value and most suitable broadband for my situation. I am very happy with the results and to also see and understand the comparisons between the different businesses and their offerings. Will definitely use Glimp again

tom anderson , 2022-04-06

Fast easy service - was able to tailor to my situation. Would recommend!

Kijo “Anyway” , 2022-04-21

Nice experience and helped me found my suitable power, telecom and gas provider.

Kay Urlich , 2021-05-11

Thank you. Very helpful, lots of info and friendly!

Salote Fonua , 2022-03-02

Larry G was very helpful when we were setting our internet provider. He was very informative and patient with the process. Glimp is an awesome website when comparing and switching power/internet providers.