Jan 072010
 

Honda’s CR-VWith the world’s greatest off-road race, the Dakar Rally, getting underway last Friday (Jan 1), Warranty Direct has revealed the most – and least – reliable pre-owned 4×4 and SUV cars on the market.

Audi’s A6 Allroad fared worst, with more than half recording a fault in a typical year. A third of those problems reported were suspension-related.

At the other end of the scale, Honda’s CR-V was revealed as the off-roader least likely to let you down, followed by the Suzuki Grand Vitara and Toyota’s RAV4. Mitsubishi and Kia make it a clean sweep for Far Eastern manufacturers in the top five.

The Volkswagen Touareg, despite winning the 2009 running of the famously tough Dakar at the hands of South African Giniel de Villiers, didn’t transfer its success to Warranty Direct’s study, finishing fourth from bottom with a quarter of faults down to electrical gremlins.

Warranty Direct’s study used its unique Reliability Index (www.reliabilityindex.co.uk), which takes into account how often vehicles break down, average repair cost and time spent in the garage to calculate its overall reliability. The lower the Reliability Index number, the more reliable the car.

Top 10 4×4/SUVs

 

 

Manufacturer

Model

Average   Repair Cost

Reliability   Index Rating

1

Honda

CR-V  (01-06)

£239.63

23.10

2

Suzuki

Grand   Vitara  (98-05)

£219.43

33.01

3

Toyota

RAV4  (00-06)

£330.58

42.69

4

Mitsubishi

Shogun   (00-07)

£595.58

47.53

5

Kia

Sorento  (03-)

£332.34

59.36

6

Nissan

Terrano   II (93-06)

£277.25

62.81

7

Land   Rover

Freelander  (03-06)

£370.23

66.11

8

Lexus

RX300  (03-09)

£571.60

68.69

9

Nissan

X-Trail  (01-)

£433.18

73.69

10

Toyota

Landcruiser   (03-)

£525.01

82.78

 

The highest-placed European car is the newer incarnation of perennial 4×4 favourite, Land Rover’s Freelander, which has traditionally fared badly in Warranty Direct’s studies.

Warranty Direct’s Duncan McClure Fisher said: “It’s promising to see improvement from Land Rover’s flagship model, but it’s telling that the bottom 10 is dominated by European cars, and the top of the list populated largely by Japanese vehicles, which still hold sway overall. The biggest surprise must surely be the poor performance of the XC90. It’s not what you’d expect from a manufacturer with Volvo’s reputation, but I’m signing cheques every day on XC90 repairs.”

With an average repair cost of £595.58, the Mitsubishi Shogun (00-07) is the most expensive to fix but thankfully has a low incidence rate, with just under 8% per year suffering a glitch.

Meanwhile, a third of Nissan’s X-Trail problems are down to cooling and heating issues while almost 60% of enforced garage visits for Volvo XC-70 owners are due to suspension breakages.

Bottom 10 4×4/SUVs

 

Manufacturer

Model

Average   Repair Cost

Reliability   Index Rating

1

Audi

A6   Allroad  (00-05)

£516.03

281.60

2

Volkswagen

Touareg  (03-)

£567.92

194.01

3

BMW

X5  (00-)

£517.30

193.36

4

Jeep

Cherokee  (01-08)

£522.40

155.72

5

Volvo

XC90  (02-)

£522.83

153.88

6

Land   Rover

Range   Rover  (02-)

£493.59

140.96

7

Land   Rover

Discovery   (98-04)

£332.17

120.11

8

Mercedes

M-Class   (98-05)

£393.01

119.85

9

Land   Rover

Discovery   (04-)

£405.10

119.44

10

Volvo

XC70   (00-07)

£429.53

115.21

 

The analysis is based on Warranty Direct’s database of 150,000 policies on cars between three and eight years old.

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