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Reliability is a crucial factor when deciding which car to get. It’s ideal to drive a vehicle that will last for many miles and years — and never leave you stranded on the side of the road. A reliable car also means fewer mechanical problems, resulting in less costly repairs. However, foreign automakers dominate for reliability. There is only one American car brand on a most reliable top 10 list: Lincoln.

Lincoln is the only American car brand on an important 10 most reliable list 

Front view of 2023 Lincoln Corsair, showing Lincoln as only American car brand on Consumer Reports 10 most reliable list
2023 Lincoln Corsair | Lincoln

Lincoln, which is Ford’s luxury division, is the only American automaker to earn a spot on Consumer Reports’ list of 10 most reliable car brands. All of the other automakers in the top 10 are foreign car brands — from Japan, South Korea, and Germany, as detailed by USA Today. Also, Lincoln barely made the reliability top 10, with it placing tenth.

Here are the 10 most reliable car brands, according to Consumer Reports:

  1. Toyota
  2. Lexus
  3. BMW
  4. Mazda
  5. Honda
  6. Audi
  7. Subaru
  8. Acura
  9. Kia 
  10. Lincoln

Toyota, which has long had a reputation for high-level reliability, is the most reliable car brand on the Consumer Reports list. Also, Lexus, the Toyota-owned luxury brand, earned the second spot, followed by German automaker BMW. However, for American reliability, the best one is Lincoln

Automotive brand reliability list based on Auto Reliability Survey

Front angle view of 2023 Lincoln Nautilus, with Lincoln as only American brand on Consumer Reports 10 most reliable list
2023 Lincoln Nautilus | Lincoln

Consumer Reports based the list of most reliable car brands on its annual Automotive Reliability Survey. For the Auto Reliability Survey, CR analyzed 17 potential problem areas during the previous year. Owners submitted surveys for over 300,000 vehicles, including all the Lincoln models. Examples of problem areas include electrical systems, brakes, paint, engines, noises, and leaks.

Due to fewer issues in these potential problem areas, Consumer Reports rated Lincoln as more reliable than any other American car brand. Compared to the previous year, Lincoln jumped 14 spots on the organization’s most reliable list. Also, Buick, another iconic American automaker, previously ranked fourth. However, due to declining reliability, Buick dropped seven spots to number 11 on the reliability list. 

Corsair and Nautilus SUVs are the most reliable Lincoln models

The reason why Lincoln vaulted into the Consumer Reports top 10 list of most reliable car brands is the improved reliability of two of its models: the Corsair compact luxury SUV and the Nautilus midsize luxury SUV. 

According to CR, the Corsair and Nautilus are the most reliable Lincoln models. They are also among the most reliable American cars. Other domestic models that earned favorable reliability ratings from Consumer Reports include the Ford Maverick compact pickup truck, the Buick Encore GX subcompact luxury SUV, the Ford Edge midsize SUV, the Chevy Trailblazer subcompact SUV, and the Chevy Blazer midsize SUV. 

However, there’s one model that prevented Lincoln from ranking even higher on the most reliable car brand list: the Aviator midsize SUV. Consumer Reports rated the Aviator, along with the mechanically-similar Ford Explorer, as one of the least reliable vehicles for the Auto Reliability Survey.

Overall, foreign automakers are more reliable than American car brands. The only American automaker to earn a spot on a top 10 list of most reliable car brands is Lincoln.

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