Letโ€™s talk reliability of new cars

Letโ€™s talk reliability of new cars

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Discussion

exelero

Original Poster:

1,344 posts

55 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
Hello everyone.
For the past 7-8 months I’m munching miles up and down the country in a HGV, therefore I see a lot of broken down cars on the motorway. Funny thing is they all seem to be new or nearly new (69 plate and above). Now there is a whole bunch of reasons why a car could be stranded on the hard shoulder or emergency area ranging from a flat tyre to God knows what.
According to my observation BMW leads the unreliability race, closely followed by VW and Mercedes. In these months I only ever saw two Lexuses broken down, one of them was about 25 years old.


So what’s the deal with all these new cars breaking down? I would’ve thought people are buying new cars for reliability and yet they keep breaking down?

WonkeyDonkey

1,415 posts

69 months

Friday 4th June
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I guess it's just teething issues with new cars. Certain parts not torqued correctly or manufacturing defects showing their face early in its life.


Baldchap

4,300 posts

58 months

Friday 4th June
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New cars are generally very reliable.

Pica-Pica

8,216 posts

50 months

Friday 4th June
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You probably only see the brands that do the most motorway mileages.

finlo

2,360 posts

169 months

Friday 4th June
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Non of those brands have ever been particularly reliable just a myth that has been perpetuated through time.

TameRacingDriver

14,485 posts

238 months

Friday 4th June
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tonyg58

190 posts

165 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
Too big and complex = breakdown problems.

Had Aygos as town cars for 10 years now.
Total number of electrical/mechanical faults = Zero.

charltjr

3,973 posts

161 months

Friday 4th June
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It’s not really a relevant comparison unless you look at how many cars have been sold.

BMW, Merc and VW are massive sellers particularly to fleet markers and user/choosers.

It’s like saying you see a lot of BMWs at motorway petrol stations, so they must have really poor fuel economy.

e-honda

6,972 posts

112 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
Which cars do you expect to see doing motorway miles, particularly outside of peak hours?
Would it be BMW closely followed by VW and Mercedes ?

Cliffe60

671 posts

2 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
TameRacingDriver said:
The average mileage of an MX5 will probably be about a third of that of an average 320d or Passat TDi, so any problems , all things equal , will take 3x as long to show up.

TameRacingDriver

14,485 posts

238 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
Cliffe60 said:
TameRacingDriver said:
The average mileage of an MX5 will probably be about a third of that of an average 320d or Passat TDi, so any problems , all things equal , will take 3x as long to show up.
To be fair I've had 2 ancient MX5s and nothing went wrong with those either, quite a few miles on both. Seriously robust little machines. I'd wager they are definitely more reliable than the average BMW (had several) or VW. Quite simply bog all to go wrong on them, and most Japanese cars tend to be more reliable on average, in my experience.

NMNeil

1,979 posts

16 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
tonyg58 said:
Too big and complex = breakdown problems.
This explanation of the Mercedes CAN system may show just how complex the electronics in a car are these days.
One system going bad often causes multiple other systems to shut down, even though they have nothing to do with the original fault.
http://www.carlogic.org/bg/data/MB%20CAN(ICC).pdf
Supposedly 40% of the cost of a new car is the electrical system.

fido

15,231 posts

221 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
TameRacingDriver said:
To be fair I've had 2 ancient MX5s and nothing went wrong with those either, quite a few miles on both. Seriously robust little machines. I'd wager they are definitely more reliable than the average BMW (had several) or VW. Quite simply bog all to go wrong on them, and most Japanese cars tend to be more reliable on average, in my experience.
Yep, even basic stuff like switches go wrong in German cars - they are good to look but not tested to destruction.

SidewaysSi

9,009 posts

200 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
fido said:
TameRacingDriver said:
To be fair I've had 2 ancient MX5s and nothing went wrong with those either, quite a few miles on both. Seriously robust little machines. I'd wager they are definitely more reliable than the average BMW (had several) or VW. Quite simply bog all to go wrong on them, and most Japanese cars tend to be more reliable on average, in my experience.
Yep, even basic stuff like switches go wrong in German cars - they are good to look but not tested to destruction.
MX5s rust for fun which is arguably worse and potentially more expensive to fix.

Driver101

9,769 posts

87 months

Friday 4th June
quotequote all
It's extremely rare to see a modern car breaking down on the motorway. To manage to establish which brands breakdown more is an amazing feat.

The reliability surveys don't help either. The vast majority of issues reported aren't breakdown issues.

_Hoppers

632 posts

31 months

Saturday 5th June
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Driver101 said:
It's extremely rare to see a modern car breaking down on the motorway. To manage to establish which brands breakdown more is an amazing feat.
Confirmation bias by the OP?

TheNewBoy

636 posts

4 months

Saturday 5th June
quotequote all
fido said:
TameRacingDriver said:
To be fair I've had 2 ancient MX5s and nothing went wrong with those either, quite a few miles on both. Seriously robust little machines. I'd wager they are definitely more reliable than the average BMW (had several) or VW. Quite simply bog all to go wrong on them, and most Japanese cars tend to be more reliable on average, in my experience.
Yep, even basic stuff like switches go wrong in German cars - they are good to look but not tested to destruction.
laugh

exelero

Original Poster:

1,344 posts

55 months

Saturday 5th June
quotequote all
_Hoppers said:
Confirmation bias by the OP?
I might be biased, but it’s not extremely rare to see new cars broken down. I do about 3-400 miles a day and see plenty of them pulled over on the hard shoulder.

exelero

Original Poster:

1,344 posts

55 months

Saturday 5th June
quotequote all
e-honda said:
Which cars do you expect to see doing motorway miles, particularly outside of peak hours?
Would it be BMW closely followed by VW and Mercedes ?
Probably yes.

ExPat2B

2,039 posts

166 months

Saturday 5th June
quotequote all
The fault cycle for almost any manufactured product is an inverse bell curve.

You will see a peak at the beginning, where anything that was not made correctly will break when used under real world conditions, then a dip in the middle of the lifecycle where everything works and is not yet worn, and then a peak at the end as parts wear out and usage damage accumulates.