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Toyota Tops CarMD Vehicle Health Index

Toyota/Lexus/Scion came out at the top of the CarMD Vehicle Health Index for the second year with an overall index rating of 0.58 — up from 0.67 in 2011, the index’s inaugural year. The reason for Toyota’s score improvement can be traced to lower repair incidents.

Hyundai held down the No. 2 spot with a rating of 0.67 — up from 0.85 a year ago. Additionally, Hyundai boasted the lowest average repair cost among the Top 10 manufacturers with an average “check engine”-related repair cost (parts plus labor) of $271.86. BMW/Mini came in with the highest average repair cost at $502.48.

Rounding out the Top 10 automakers by CarMD index rating were …
• BMW/Mini – 0.84
• Honda/Acura – 0.98
• Volkswagen/Audi – 0.99
• Nissan/Infiniti – 1.00
• Kia – 1.04
• General Motors – 1.12
• Ford/Lincoln/Mercury – 1.17
• Chrysler/Jeep/Ram/Dodge – 1.23

Most of the automakers saw their CarMD index rating improve year-over-year, reflecting an overall improvement in vehicle reliability. The only decliners were Ford (dropped from No. 4 to No. 9) and General Motors (fell from No. 5 to No. 8). Both automakers experienced a slight drop in repair incidents but an increase in average repair costs. GM’s average cost for “check engine”-related repairs rose 18 percent from $245.27 to $290.50, while Ford’s average repair costs increased 42 percent from $240.68 to $340.96.

CarMD’s Vehicle Health Index ratings are based on more than 163,000 specific repairs performed from Sept. 1, 2011 to Sept. 1, 2012, encompassing roughly 136 million model-year 2002 to 2012 vehicles.

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