As you prepare to purchase a vehicle, you will want to keep in mind the safest models and brands on the market. Certain automakers are known for building durable vehicles with few defects. Yet, others have a reputation for recalls. Some recalls are for minor issues and may not signify that an automaker builds poor quality vehicles. But a high number of recalls can point to more serious problems, as can those impacting a large volume of an automaker’s vehicles.
The big three
Between 2014 and 2018, vehicles manufactured by three automakers had more recalls than those produced by their competitors. These companies – General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler – are the leading manufacturers of vehicles in the United States. Of the trio, General Motors led the way with 213 recalls affecting nearly 55,000,000 vehicles. Ford’s 209 recalls impacted 25,000,000 vehicles by comparison. And Fiat Chrysler issued 208 recalls for almost 41,000,000 vehicles.
Other notable recalls
Automakers beside the Big Three have had problems with recalls as well. Mercedes-Benz, for instance, makes the most recalled car on the market – their C-Class series. Between 2013 and 2017, the C-Class received over seven times the number of recalls that the average vehicle did. Most of these recalls were for major defects like steering column failure, airbag issues and a poorly bonded sunroof. Smaller, newer automakers are not immune from recalls, either. Tesla has fewer recalls than its competitors. But 100% of those issued were for safety defects that could cause accidents, injury or death.
When vehicles face major recalls, they can be inconvenient for owners at best and dangerous at worst. Knowing which vehicles have a history of recalls can help you understand their risks and make a sound automotive purchase.