Every year car buyers use J.D. Power and their numerous quality tests to determine what vehicle to drive off the lot. And FCA and the Dodge brand – yes, Dodge – have just been announced as the 2020 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study winners, marking the first time that an American Automaker has taken the top spot in the test’s 34 year history. Tesla ranked last.
The J.D. Power Initial Quality Study is based on surveys completed by actual car owners, and they detail any sort of issues related to vehicle quality that the owner may have experienced during the first 90 days of ownership. In 2020, Dodge vehicles received a score of 136 problems per 100 vehicles, which was enough for the brand to tie Kia for the first place spot.
It is important to note that the average score received by automakers in 2020 was 166 problems per 100 vehicles, much higher than last year’s average of 93. This is because the J.D. Power Initial Quality Study now features more questions relating to technology issues faced by owners. FCA’s Uconnect infotainment is one of the best systems in the business, and it is possible that it helped to push the brand towards the top. FCA finished with an overall average of 153, marking the first time in its history that the company has ranked above the industry average.
In fact, FCA has had quite the year for themselves. Up from 21st place last year, the Ram brand managed to secure 3rd place off the back of their all-new Ram 1500 and Heavy Duty models. Even the company’s production facilities ranked well, with the Toluca Assembly Plant taking home the top-prize Gold Award in the Americas, while the Belvidere Assembly Plant earned the Bronze trophy.
While Dodge’s current lineup of muscle cars and SUVs isn’t for everybody, you can’t deny the quality of the products through the first 90 days. Who would’ve thought the company who sells street legal drag racing machines would come out on top in a J.D. Power’s test for quality.