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Toyota comes out on top of Consumer Reports survey, predicts further success

Consumer Reports has published their findings from a survey of 800,000 people about the reliability of their combined 1.2 million vehicles from model years 2010 to 2012. The report is intended to predict what the most reliable of the 2013 models will be, and unfortunately this means that any vehicles which are all new for 2013 aren’t included. But there was a clear winner, with all of Toyota’s three brands (Toyota, Lexus and Scion) earning top spots. And the most reliable of all was the Prius C, the smaller version of Toyota’s hugely popular hybrid model, despite not actually being a car which Consumer Reports recommends.

Japanese brands in general did very well, with Mazda, Subaru and Honda not far behind Toyota. Ford took a dive in the ratings, but this is not entirely their fault. Since the Ford Escape, Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ are all new for 2013, the normally strong showing from these vehicles wasn’t counted in the totals. That said, the heap of complaints over touchscreens and transmissions on Ford vehicles could safely be said to be their fault. Audi saw the biggest gain in the survey, moving up 18 spots to number 8, the highest of any European brand, thanks in large part to their new A7 model, which has also been a hit with reviewers.

Spooky warnings from opponents of the Chevy Volt about vehicle fires have shown to have no relevance to the real world, as the car came in as the most reliable of all GM models, although Cadillac held the spot as the top GM brand. Electric cars in general did well, with the Leaf holding the number one spot for Nissan models.

Along with this good news, Toyota has decided to call the Camry the most popular car in America for the eleventh year in a row. It might seem a bit early to make this call, since there are still two months of sales left in 2012, but the Camry is so far ahead in sales that it would be nearly impossible for any car in the US market to outsell it before the end of the year. The closest competitor, the Honda Accord, sold 247,847 units so far this year. That’s a lot of cars, but the Camry’s 314,788 units give it a clear lead. The Nissan Altima, Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla came next in the rankings, and all of them sold over 200,000 units.