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Kia Ranks First Out of 32 Automotive Brands in the 2022 J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study

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【Summary】South Korean automaker Kia took the coveted top spot in the JD. Power’s annual vehicle dependability study. The first place spot in the Upper Mid Size SUV category was awarded to the Kia Sorento, which is built in the U.S. at the automaker’s factory in West Point, Georgia. Being recognized by J.D. Power for vehicle dependability serves as an important marketing tool for automakers and it can help boost sales of particular models.

FutureCar Staff    Mar 19, 2022 3:30 PM PT
Kia Ranks First Out of 32 Automotive Brands in the 2022 J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study
The 2021 Kia Sorento.

South Korean automaker Kia took the coveted top spot in the JD. Power's annual vehicle dependability study. The first place spot in the Upper Mid Size SUV category was awarded to the Kia Sorento, which is built in the U.S. at the automaker's factory in West Point, Georgia.

Each year, the J.D. Power 2022 Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) ranks models of all major automotive brands (mainstream and luxury) in the U.S. Being recognized by J.D. Power for vehicle dependability serves as an important marketing tool for automakers, and it can help boost sales of particular models.

The SUV category in the U.S. is one of the most popular segments and highly competitive. Kia and Hyundai have an entire lineup of SUVs and crossovers at different price points. In addition to the award-winning Sorento, Kia offers the Telluride, Seltos, Niro and Sportage. Excluding the Telluride, all of these SUV models are offered with hybrid powertrains.

J.D. Power's industry-wide study examines problems experienced during the past 12 months by original owners of three-year old vehicles, which are the 2019 model year.  

Overall dependability is determined by the number of problems experienced by owners per 100 vehicles (PP100). Lower scores mean that customers have reported problems with certain models. Top scores however, reflect a higher level of overall vehicle quality.  

Kia claimed top "Overall Nameplate" honors with a score of 145 PP100.  This latest achievement comes after Kia earned the highest number of J.D. Power Initial Quality awards in the industry in 2021.

"The results of this year's J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study substantiate Kia's unrelenting commitment to the quality, durability and craftsmanship of our award-winning vehicle line," said Sean Yoon, president and CEO of Kia North America and Kia America.  "Furthermore, the Sorento's category win speaks to the world-class ownership experience we deliver to our customers."

The rankings were compiled from 29,487 surveys completed by customers across 32 major brands. It focuses primarily on new technologies and features currently available to buyers.  The vehicles are grouped into five major vehicle areas, which include PP100, component replacement, software updates, vehicle appeal and deterioration.

Kia was also recognized this week for its 2022 Kia Telluride full-size SUV, which was named "Best 3-Row SUV for the Money" by the editors of U.S. News Best Cars, in the publication's annual selection of "Best Car for the Money" recipients. 

Although the Kia Sorento and Telluride are gas-powered vehicles, Kia is being transformed into an electric brand by its parent company Hyundai.

In May 2021, Kia unveiled the production version of its new EV6 crossover at a live streamed media event in Times Square in New York City. The EV6 is the first purely electric vehicle from Kia, but other EVs will soon follow.

The EV6 is built on the automaker's new E-GMP modular platform, which Kia's parent Hyundai Motor Co revealed in Dec 2020. The E-GMP platform can accommodate different body staples such a s SUVs, crossovers and sedans. 

The modular EV platform will share its core components among various models to reduce complexity, allowing Kia to more easily add new electric models to its portfolio. Kia's EV platform offers high performance from its electric powertrain and also will underpin all-wheel-drive vehicles.

The launch of the new EV6 SUV, which is a strong competitor to Tesla's Model Y, is part of Kia's ‘Plan S' strategy that will include the launch of 11 all-new electrified models globally by 2026. 

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