Only 2 Small Cars Are No Longer Recommended by Consumer Reports

The choice of which car to buy is an important decision, so you want to make sure that you get it right. To aid this decision, Consumer Reports provides a list of recommended vehicles — based on its annual Auto Reliability Survey. And following the release of the Auto Reliability Survey, only two small cars are no longer recommended by Consumer Reports for next year: the 2023 Hyundai Elantra and the 2023 Nissan Sentra.

Hyundai Elantra and Nissan Sentra are the only two small cars to lose Consumer Reports recommendation

Front view of gray 2023 Hyundai Elantra, a small car no longer recommended by Consumer Reports
2023 Hyundai Elantra | Hyundai

The Hyundai Elantra and Nissan Sentra compact cars were previously on the Consumer Reports list of recommended vehicles. CR recommended these two small cars because they earned favorable ratings from the organization’s owner surveys. 

After the recent release of the Auto Reliability Survey, it’s a different story, though. Consumer Reports reversed course on its recommendation for the 2023 Hyundai Elantra and the 2023 Nissan Sentra. They are the only two small cars to lose the coveted CR recommendation.

Why does CR no longer recommend the Hyundai Elantra and Nissan Sentra compact cars?

Front view of blue 2023 Nissan Sentra, a small car no longer recommended by Consumer Reports
2023 Nissan Sentra | Nissan

For the annual Auto Reliability Survey, Consumer Reports evaluated 17 potential issues with vehicles during the previous 12 months. It covers a wide range of problem areas, such as noises, engines, brakes, electrical systems, paint, and leaks.

In total, CR analyzed over 300,000 vehicles. And by reviewing the results of the survey, the organization determined the predicted reliability rating of nearly all new cars sold in the United States, including the Elantra and Sentra.

Unfortunately, the 2023 Hyundai Elantra and the 2023 Nissan Sentra compact cars lost their recommendation from Consumer Reports due to lower reliability — as revealed in the Auto Reliability Survey. The diminished reliability of each small car is due to multiple factors.

For the Elantra, the primary concern from owners was problems with the paint and trim. Apparently, there were issues with trim and film peeling or dropping off the vehicle. Other problems include the climate system, steering, and suspension. 

For the Sentra, the primary problem was the brakes. Specifically, owners reported squealing and premature brake wear. Other issues with the Sentra include noises, leaks, paint, trim, and the climate system. 

Other models that lost the CR recommendation

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While the 2023 Hyundai Elantra and the 2023 Nissan Sentra are the only compact cars that lost the Consumer Reports recommendation, there are five other models that got kicked off the list. This includes another Hyundai model, the 2023 Hyundai Kona crossover SUV. 

Ford was the only other automaker that lost more than one vehicle recommendation: the all-electric 2023 Ford Mustang Mach-E crossover SUV and the 2023 Ford Bronco Sport crossover SUV. The other models no longer recommended by CR are the 2023 Volvo XC60 luxury SUV and the 2023 Toyota Tundra pickup truck.

We’ll have to see if the Hyundai Elantra and the Nissan Sentra rebound with improved reliability in the coming year to earn back the coveted recommendation from Consumer Reports. It’s worth noting that Hyundai claims they are addressing the issues of concern. However, Nissan refutes the findings of the Auto Reliability Survey, so it’s unknown if the automaker is doing anything to address the reliability problems that owners listed in the surveys.