Honda and Toyota are perennial success stories in Consumer Reports' closely watched automaker brand ratings. And for the last four years, Honda has led the field.
No longer. CR announced its 2012 Automaker Report Cards results today, and Subaru now leads the pack. At the same time, Toyota captured top honors in five of the survey's vehicle categories - an impressive result for an automaker beleaguered recently by problems such as sticky gas pedals and loose floor mats that brought "unintended acceleration" into the scare-story lexicon.
The survey results bore some bad news for Ford, which dropped from 5th place to 10th place in the overall ratings. "Ford’s road-test score improved by two points over last year’s, but subpar reliability of some new vehicles, due largely to the troublesome MyFord Touch infotainment system and Power-Shift automatic transmission, hurt its report-card grade," CR said in its announcement.
Reliability data also dragged down results for GM and Chrysler, as well as that of European automakers. Japanese manufacturers captured the top five spots - helped by Mazda's jump from seventh to second place. For more information, go to the magazine's website - be warned, though, that much of it requires a subscription.
The magazine said Toyota's capture of five of the top-10 categories marked the first time in nearly a decade that a single automaker led so much of the field. Here are the category leaders: