Used Car Buying General Information

What Is the Most Reliable Used Automobile?


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When buying a pre-owned car there are many things to consider but one of the most important is finding a reliable used automobile. A great source of information regarding reliability is Consumer Reports annual ratings. Consumer Reports compiles it lists using responses from its Annual Auto Survey which garners about 1.4 million responses. The results are broken down into types of cars to help narrow your search.

If you are looking for a small car then the vehicles listed below cannot be beat for finding a reliable car. They all made Consumer Reports latest list and top many other of the reliable used automobile ratings.

  • Toyota - Toyota makes some of the most reliable cars in the world. In this category 3 Toyota's stand out when it comes to reliability. The Echo, Corolla, and Matrix have outstanding records as cars that stand up to the test of time. The Scion XB which is owned by Toyota also makes the list.

  • Mazda - The Mazda 3 and Mazda Protege.

  • Honda - Honda has a vehicle in just about every category and like Toyota manufactures some of the most reliable cars available. The Civic makes the list in the small car category.

  • Subaru- Subaru is another manufacturer that has a vehicle in almost every category. The Impreza is not only a great looking, high performing car it is also very reliable.

  • Pontiac Vibe - This is one of the few American cars to make the list. Unfortunately, with recent developments at GM, there is a good chance that Pontiac will be sold or shut down.

If you are looking for something a bit larger, here are the most reliable used family sized cars.

  • Toyota - Again Toyota has more then one car in this category. The Prius and Camry prove that Toyota really does build some of the most highly regarded cars on the planet.

  • Honda - The Accord has been one of the best selling cars in the world and has made just about every reliable car list out there.

  • American Cars - The Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan are the only two American made cars that make Consumer Reports list in this category.

  • Subaru - The Outback, which is the Impreza's larger cousin, has a fantastic track record for reliability and holding its value.

  • Nissan - The Altima makes the list this year and is the only Nissan in the car category. Their Xterra SUV (2005-2008) also makes Consumer Reports list.

If you have a big family to haul around then a mini van is the best solution. While there are a lot of mini vans out on the road, only two are reliable enough to make the Consumer Reports list. Again Toyota tops the category followed by Honda Odyssey.

When it comes to mid and large sized SUVs, once again Toyota is the big winner with 4 SUVs on the list. The Highlander, Land Cruiser, 4 Runner and Sequoia. The other SUVs on the list include the Honda Pilot, Lexus RX and GX, Infiniti FX35 and QX4, Acura MDX, Hyundai Sante Fe, and Subaru Tribeca.

Obviously, just because a car is on the Consumer Reports list does not guarantee that it will provide years of reliable service. It is always a good idea to get a car lemon report or have a mechanic you trust check out any used car you may purchase. There are a lot of things to consider when looking for a used car, and not every vehicle that will fit your specific needs may be on this list, but they are a good place to start your search.

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