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Are Alfa Romeos Good Cars? This 2021 J.D. Power Dependability Study Says No

The Alfa Romeo is one of the best-looking and best performing vehicles out there, however, it’s also apparently one of the least reliable. Because of that, its dependability ratings are low. 

According to Business Wire, J.D. Power released their newest dependability survey results, and it appears its dependability is even worse than you might think. 

Who is J.D. Power, and how do they come up with their rankings?

J.D. Power is a data analytic company that uses information from surveys they send out to vehicle owners to determine dependability and other insights about cars, trucks, and SUVs as well as other products. Potential buyers can use J.D. Power’s findings to determine whether or not a vehicle is worth buying. 

For the Vehicle Dependability Study they do every year, J.D. Power asks questions that are specific to 177 different problems a vehicle can experience. They group each of those issues into one of eight categories. They include engine/transmission, exterior, interior, seating, and driving experience. 

J.D. Powers also adds audio, communication, entertainment, navigation, features/controls/displays, and heating, ventilation, as well as air-conditioning. All information they gather is from a three-year period (2018-2020). 

Each car earns a score of PP100, which stands for problems per 100 vehicles. The lower the score, the higher dependability rate the vehicle has. The higher the score, the less dependable the car becomes. 

Why is the Alfa Romeo so low on their list?

A close-up view of an Alfa Romeo badge on the front of a car
An Alfa Romeo badge on the front of a car | Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Alfa Romeo landed in the No. 31 spot out of the 32 brands analyzed. It ended up with 196 problems per 100 vehicles, which puts it slightly ahead of Land Rover, which came in last. 

According to CNBC, the largest number of problems people reported on the surveys were from entertainment, audio, navigation, and communication features. That doesn’t seem to be the case for the Alfa Romeo, though. This Italian brand has been plagued with issues from electronics and other interior materials. 

The electronic problem is the number one culprit, though, for the brand trying to establish itself in American markets. Some of the issues are severe because they can cause problems with the engine not wanting to start.

It’s unfortunate, though, because Alfa Romeo builds high-performance cars. It just can’t seem to get over the electronic problems that are dragging it down. 

Who else sits at the bottom with the Alfa Romeo?

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The bottom three brands on J.D. Power’s list are Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, and Land Rover. Jaguar’s brand received reports of 186 problems per 100 vehicles, while the Land Rover brought 244. 

Land Rover doesn’t have the best reputation when it comes to maintenance on its vehicles. Owners complained of having axle and suspension problems with these SUVs, which are costly to repair. Its predicted reliability rating with Consumer Reports are generally on the lower side. 

Jaguar hasn’t had much luck either, especially with its I-Pace. Owners get frustrated with its mysterious inability to start and other electronic issues. 

Tesla, which hasn’t been included on the surveys, was unofficially analyzed this year. It came out with 176 problems per 100 vehicles. This places it behind Chrysler but before Jaguar. It’s not technically accurate, however, because J.D. Power didn’t have permission to survey some states. 

With the electronics issues plaguing the Alfa Romeo, it’s not really a surprise it’s found itself at the bottom of the J.D. Power list. If they can finally get a handle on those issues, we might see the Italian brand move up higher on the list.