The Least Satisfying Car Brands According to Consumer Reports

When it comes to consumer satisfaction ratings on Consumer Reports, there are a few manufacturers that stand out as the best car brands. Conversely, there are also a few that get lower scores than others. These are the least satisfying car brands according to Consumer Reports.

A Mercedes-Benz model with the three-pointed star on its grill represents one of the worst car brands according to owners on consumer reports
Mercedes-Benz logo | Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

What are the worst car brands in terms of consumer satisfaction ratings?

A black General Motors full-size SUV parked outside a modern white home on a cloudless day
2021 Cadillac Escalade | General Motors

Although these may not be the worst car brands in terms of performance or style when it comes to consumer satisfaction ratings, the worst car brands reviewed by Consumer Reports all scored below 65/100. The consumer satisfaction survey rates car brands based on how many owners say they would buy another of the same vehicle from that respective brand. So which ones are the worst car brands? 

According to Consumer Reports, the manufacturers with the lowest consumer satisfaction ratings are Mercedes-Benz (64/100), Buick (61/100), Cadillac (59/100), Nissan (58), and Infiniti (48). For one reason or another, fewer owners of vehicles manufactured by these brands would opt to rebuy. Chevrolet and GMC tied for sixth place with scores of 65/100. 

How many models are used for scoring? 

A black 2021 GMC Sierra AT4 off-roading in the woods
2021 GMC Sierra AT4 | GMC

One important factor we should take into consideration is that these brands all have a varying range of models which Consumer Reports reviewed. Consumer Reports collected data from the owners of four different Mercedes-Benz models. There is data from two Buick models and two Cadillac models.

Nissan owners of seven different models submitted information for the survey. The Infiniti results include data from the owners of three different models. Chevrolet’s results include nine models. GMC brings data from five models to the table. 

All of the worst car brands in terms of Consumer Reports satisfaction ratings show data from a similar number of models as the top brands. Tesla and Lincoln, the No. 1 and No. 2 brands respectively, include data from four models. Ram and Chrysler (No.3 and No. 4) each offered data from two models to the survey. Middle-of-the-pack scorers like Toyota (71/100) and Ford (70/100) include data from 13 and 9 models, respectively. So it’s not likely that the number of models has much to do with the low scores. According to actual owners, these five brands are the least satisfying car brands to own.  

What are the worst car brands still doing right? 

A 2021 Nissan Infiniti QX50 parked on a highway in front of a mountain with scattered houses on it.
2021 Nissan Infiniti QX50 | Infiniti USA

The brands we mentioned have the lowest consumer satisfaction ratings according to Consumer Reports. But that doesn’t mean that these brands don’t still garner some positive attention. It also does not definitively label them as the worst car brands. Mercedes-Benz, for example, gets a 5/5 for driving experience and a 4/5 for cabin comfort. 

Chevrolet and GMC each show scores of 4/5 for driving experience. Cadillac scored a 4/5 for both driving experience and cabin comfort. Buick has a high 4/5 score for cabin comfort. Nissan and Infiniti both have the lowest consumer satisfaction scores. Still, they each earned a 3/5 score for both driving experience and cabin comfort. 

Overall, there are models from each of these manufacturers that have much to offer. That said, there are certain brands that performed a lot better in terms of survey results from actual owners. While ultimately the choice comes down to the buyers, using ratings from various critics can help inform our car shopping decisions. The fact that these are the least satisfying car brands according to owner data is worth noting.

A red 2022 Nissan Pathfinder driving down the road
2022 Nissan Pathfinder | Nissan

RELATED: Tesla Crushed Toyota in This Consumer Reports Satisfaction Feud