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What Are the Most Recalled Auto Brands?

August 19, 2016

When you think of recalls, what comes to mind? Affordable models? Domestic brands? You should probably rethink the whole paradigm because all kinds of vehicles are recalled. Autos were much simpler just a few years ago. Now, all of the technology in our cars might be the cause of the increasing recall rate.

We found some statistics over at axlegeeks that should help you understand the risk of being recalled for several brands. Since most manufacturers' recall rates have steadily increased since the 90s, we compared the total number of recalled vehicles since 1990 to the total number of recalls (problems that required a recall) in 2015. We ended up with the following results.

Most Recalls in 2015

Ford (Ford, Lincoln)49
GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC)45
Toyota (Toyota, Lexus)27
Honda (Honda, Acura)22
Nissan (Nissan, Infiniti)20
BMW (BMW,Mini)19
Mercedes (Mercedes, Smart)18
Fiat Chrysler (Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge Jeep)4

Most Recalled Vehicles Since 1990

Honda (Honda, Acura)13,577,460
GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC)10,602,714
Toyota (Toyota, Lexus)8,420,039
Fiat Chrysler (Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge Jeep)6,867,022
Ford (Ford, Lincoln)5,410,495
Nissan (Nissan, Infiniti)3,992,606
BMW (BMW,Mini)1,568,305
Mercedes (Mercedes, Smart)1,203,210

American Brands

As you can see, of the American manufacturers, Ford and GM have really had trouble in the past year or two whereas Chrysler is one of the only manufacturers that has actually decreased its recalls since the 1990s. That could be due to the simplicity of Fiat models and the revamping of other Chrysler Brands. At any rate, Chrysler doesn't recall much these days. We've noticed some complaints about Ford lately, regarding comfort features and F-150 transmissions. We're hoping the company can find out how to prevent further problems.

Japanese Brands

Honda has made significant efforts to curb its recall rate. They ranked in the top four recallers of 2015, however. Nissan and Mitsubishi vehicles have always been less prone to recalls than Honda and Toyota; although, Hondas and Toyotas are well-known for their reliability.

European Brands

Some European brands, frankly, have a reputation they might not deserve. In the case of Mercedes-Benz, we would say that the perceived quality does not match up with the realistic quality. That is simply due to the fact that Mercedes and Smart vehicles (a Mercedes Brand) are not as reliable as many other brands and because they are in the top 10 recallers. BMW is the only other European manufacturer in the top-10 recallers, besides Mercedes, and it finished in the middle of the pack in 2015.


As Korea's largest vehicle exporter, Hyundai has proven its worth in the past decade or so. The company recalled relatively few parts in 2015 while its domestic competitor, Kia, didn't make the top ten list. It may be due to design and perceived quality that Kia trails Hyundai in American sales. As Consumer Reports shows us, Kia's reliability rating is significantly better.

When you're in the market for an automobile, make sure you get online quotes. You'll be sure you're getting the best deal around when you have offers from all of your local dealers.

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