Critics have a lot of power when it comes to what vehicles are purchased and which are ignored. There are some die-hard fans who will buy a vehicle no matter what others say, because they like the way it looks, have fond memories of it, or it’s the most convenient to buy. But when an automaker like Land Rover gets totally roasted, it’s probably going to have a negative impact.
J.D. Power, which goes directly to consumers to find out what they think, found no one was impressed with Land Rover. In fact, it came in dead last when it came to owner satisfaction on J.D. Power’s latest survey. So why is Land Rover so unpopular with consumers?
What is J.D. Power?
Before we discuss why Land Rover came in dead last, it’s important to discuss what J.D. Power is, and whether or not it’s worth your time to listen. J.D. Power is a company that analyzes data to help business leaders make better decisions. While it doesn’t work exclusively with automakers, that tends to be a big part of J.D. Power’s reviews.
One of the studies that J.D. Power puts out for automobiles is the U.S. Dependability study. J.D. Power describes this study by stating,
“The J.D. Power U.S. Vehicle Dependability StudySM (VDS) focuses on problems experienced by original owners of 3-year-old vehicles. Study findings are used extensively by manufacturers worldwide to help them design and build better vehicles—which typically retain higher resale value—and by consumers to help them make more informed choices for both new and used vehicles.”
It’s questionable as to whether you should put much stock in J.D. Power when deciding on a new vehicle. Sometimes the results vary drastically from other critics, but that’s to be expected, as they all use different criteria when testing. Checking out what J.D. Power has to say is always a good idea, but then use your own judgment before buying a new vehicle.
This year, 33,251 verified owners of 2018 model-year vehicles were surveyed. Land Rover had the highest number of complaints, which is why it came in last.
Land Rover failed to impress
Land Rover has some amazing looking vehicles, but when it comes to dependability, the British automaker often leaves owners desiring more. The J.D. Power survey is a prime example of this, as Land Rover got 244 complaints. Just a quick glance at the bar graph posted by Business Wire shows that Land Rover sticks out like a sore thumb compared to the other automakers.
J.D. Power isn’t the only critic who doesn’t recommend a Land Rover. Consumer Reports has been very outspoken about Land Rover, and why potential owners should steer clear of it.
While it’s true that Land Rovers are some of the best off-road vehicles on the market, they typically fail in other areas. The high price tags are also a major turn-off for many consumers.
Land Rover wasn’t the only automaker who is rock bottom
Land Rover may have been the worst-ranked, but there were many other automakers who were near the bottom of the list with it. Tesla was one, according to CNBC, although it’s questionable if the rankings were accurate, because Elon Musk didn’t give J.D. Power permission to survey owners in 15 states. This makes Tesla’s rank of 30th out of 33 automakers unofficial.
The ranks for the other automakers, however, are very much official. According to Business Wire, Alfa Romeo earned a rank of 32, thanks to 196 complaints. Jaguar and Chrysler were the other worst automakers to make the list.
So which automaker came out on top? That would be Lexus, with Porsche coming in second. Kia came in third, finally shedding the bad reputation that has followed it for years.
How this impacts Land Rover in the future remains to be seen. Considering that many consumers won’t buy anything but a Land Rover, there will always be a dedicated following. Given the price for most Land Rangers, however, that following may be declining.