2018 Vehicle Dependability Study:Most Dependable Family Cars

Christian Wardlaw | Feb 14, 2018

Thousands of original owners of 3-year-old vehicles are surveyed each year by J.D. Power, responding to questions about what has gone right and what has gone wrong during the 36 months they’ve owned their vehicle. This data is gathered, analyzed, and forms the basis for the annual J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS).

From this information, in order to summarize the study’s findings is a visually representative manner, J.D. Power creates vehicle dependability Power Circle Ratings. These ratings reflect how dependable a used car, truck, SUV, or minivan is likely to be based on what original owners of the vehicles have told J.D. Power. Consumers can use these ratings to make more informed decisions when buying a used vehicle.

2015 Chevrolet Malibu photoBased on the data gathered for the 2018 VDS, this Most Dependable Family Cars guide includes those 2015 model-year cars and minivans that receive a Power Circle Rating of 4 or 5 out of a possible 5 for vehicle dependability after three years of ownership. They are listed in alphabetical order.

2015 Buick LaCrosse

Emphasizing fuel efficiency thanks to a standard mild-hybrid powertrain and rear seat comfort and space, the Buick LaCrosse is a full-size 4-door sedan. In addition to its 182-horsepower, light-electrified eAssist hybrid setup, a 304-horsepower V6 engine is available. For 2015, Buick added a standard 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot and a reversing camera, while the IntelliLink infotainment system gained Siri Eyes Free capability and text-message alert functionality.

The 2015 Buick LaCrosse receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5, and receives an award in the Large Car category.

2015 Buick Regal

Based on the Opel Insignia, an upscale vehicle designed and engineered in Germany, the Buick Regal is a midsize 4-door sedan that looks and feels European. A turbocharged 4-cylinder engine delivers 259 horsepower, and all-wheel drive is an option. If fuel efficiency is of critical importance, the car can be fitted with the same light-electrified eAssist powertrain as the LaCrosse uses, while a GS trim level transforms the Regal into a sport sedan. For 2015, a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot became standard.

The 2015 Buick Regal receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 4 out of 5.

2015 Chevrolet Malibu

Based on the same platform as the Buick Regal, but without the European design or driving dynamics, the Chevrolet Malibu is a midsize 4-door sedan. Buyers choose from LS, LT, and LTZ trim, and the most popular engine is a 196-horsepower, 2.5-liter 4-cylinder. A turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder is an option, belting out 259 hp. In 2015, after two years of significant changes, the Malibu received nothing more than a standard 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot.

The 2015 Chevrolet Malibu receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 4 out of 5, and receives an award in the Midsize Car category.

2015 Honda Odyssey

Yes, the Odyssey is a minivan and not a car, but its still designed to haul families around, and more effectively than just about any other type of vehicle can. Available in LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Touring Elite trim levels, every Odyssey is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 and a 6-speed automatic transmission motivating the front wheels. For 2015, Honda made no changes to its biggest people mover.

The 2015 Honda Odyssey receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5, and receives an award in the Minivan category.

2015 Hyundai Sonata

Redesigned for the 2015 model year, the Hyundai Sonatahttps://www.jdpower.com/Cars/2015/Hyundai/Sonata came with a choice between three 4-cylinder engines, two of them turbocharged. Trim levels included SE, Sport, and Limited, and the Sonata boasted one of the largest interiors and trunks in its segment. Highlights included modern new driver assistance and collision avoidance technologies, as well as Blue Link subscription services. A Sonata Hybrid was also available, but it was based on the previous-generation version of the car.

The 2015 Hyundai Sonata receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 4 out of 5.

2015 Toyota Camry

Everyone knows that the Toyota Camry is the automaker’s midsize 4-door sedan. What people might not realize is that in 2015, Toyota bestowed upon the car a significant freshening that included new styling, an improved interior, an upgraded vehicle structure, and a major technological upgrade. Variants included L, LE, XLE, SE, and new XSE trims powered by a 4-cylinder or V6 engine, and the efficient Camry Hybrid was offered for the first time is sporty SE trim.

The 2015 Toyota Camry receives a Vehicle Dependability Power Circle Rating of 5 out of 5.

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