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2017 Vehicle Dependability Study: Most Dependable Small Cars

2017 Vehicle Dependability Study: Most Dependable Small Cars

By Christian Wardlaw, February 22, 2017

Annually, J.D. Power conducts the U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS). The study measures problems with design and defects with 3-year-old vehicles, as reported by original owners of the vehicles. Participants in the study detail what has gone right and what has gone wrong with their cars, trucks, SUVs, and vans, and J.D. Power analyzes the data and publishes its conclusions in the VDS.

To express study findings in a simple, consumer-friendly way, J.D. Power generates Power Circle Ratings. These ratings are an easily understood visual representation of a model’s performance relative to its competitors and are designed to help consumers make smart decisions about the vehicles they buy.

2014 Chevrolet Sonic LTZ Sedan photoThis buyer’s guide highlights the top-rated 2014 small cars that receive a Power Circle Rating of 5 out of a possible 5 for vehicle dependability after 3 years of ownership.



2014 Buick Verano
With the 2014 Verano, Buick aimed to provide entry-level luxury at a relatively affordable price. In 2014, the standard infotainment system added text-messaging support as well as Siri Eyes Free compatibility, while the optional Convenience Group expanded to provide key safety technologies, including forward-collision warning, blind-spot monitoring, and more.

The 2014 Buick Verano receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5.

2014 Chevrolet Sonic
Available in sedan and hatchback body styles, the 2014 Chevy Sonic is a safe, technologically advanced and dependable small used car. In 2014, Chevrolet introduced forward-collision and lane-departure warning systems to the car, made a reversing camera standard for LTZ and RS trim levels, expanded the RS trim to the sedan body style, and added an upscale Dusk option package for the LTZ Sedan.

The 2014 Chevrolet Sonic receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5 and receives a dependability award in the Small Car segment.

2014 Honda Civic
Honda’s ever-popular compact car, the Civic, came in coupe and sedan body styles in 2014 and with gasoline, gas-electric hybrid, and compressed natural gas drivetrains. In 2014, the coupe was restyled to improve its appeal, gasoline drivetrains were upgraded, and a next-generation version of HondaLink subscription services arrived, along with a larger infotainment screen. Keyless entry and a LaneWatch camera system also arrived in 2014.

The 2014 Honda Civic receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5.

2014 Kia Soul
Completely redesigned for 2014, the Kia Soul grew much larger and received a significant injection of refinement. If not for its lack of an optional all-wheel-drive system, it could qualify as a small SUV. Trim levels included base, Plus, and Exclaim, and Kia offered two different engines for the Soul. When fully equipped, feature content rivaled entry-luxury vehicles.

The 2014 Kia Soul receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5.

2014 Toyota Prius
Toyota’s well-known hybrid car, the Prius, is a 5-door hatchback. In 2014, it was available with a gas-electric drivetrain or a plug-in gas-electric drivetrain that supplied 11 miles of electric driving range at speeds under 60 mph before switching to gas-electric functionality. No changes, aside from price reductions to the Prius Plug-in, were made for 2014.

The 2014 Toyota Prius receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5 and receives a dependability award in the Compact Car segment.


Additional Research:


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