Monday

Who Makes the Worst Cars?

Okay, so you're probably wondering...who makes the worst cars? We don't know, but we do know who we get the most complaints about and who our clients file lawsuits against more than anyone else.

We keep track of our numbers. And what our numbers are in Ohio may be different from what the numbers are in a different state. Still, we can give you some clues.

First, let's talk about who makes what must be the best cars, based on the number of complaints and lawsuits we see and hear about. Lexis. No doubt about it. Out of all the vehicle manufacturers that we've dealt with going all the way back to 1978, Lexis is the only company that we can think of that we have never had to file a lawsuit against.

We've filed lawsuits against all the rest...from Sterling (they left the USA long ago) and Yugo (arguably one of the causes of the fall of Communism in Yugoslavia), to the usual Ford and Chrysler and GM cars. Yes, we know that Chrysler is now called DaimlerChrysler, but it's still Chrysler to us...just with a Germanic accent, we suppose.

But out of the "big three" (Chrysler, Ford, and GM), who do we file lawsuits against the most? That's an easy question. Ford is the answer, but that can be partly based on their "attitude" of "we build no wrong" car or truck. They just seem to have a hard time admitting that sometimes things go wrong. Most of the time we see them blame the owner for what's going wrong, while the owner is, of course, saying the dealer is incompetent (never mind the fact that they often are) and defects in the manufacturing process (did you know that GM once built a car that required the engine to be removed in order to change the spark plugs? or that they once described a common steering defect as "morning sickness"?).

Following Ford, GM comes in second place but only because of quantity. They sell more so, statistically speaking, more are bound to go wrong, we think. Still the good thing about GM is that they at least "step up to the plate" and try to satisfy their customers. We think they realize that it's better to keep a customer than to lose them to the competition.

Chrysler? They come in third place, no doubt. The quantity of sales is probably smaller but, frankly, the quality is higher. And sometimes they actually care about their customers enough to try to avoid a lawsuit if they can. Still, when you get a bad one, you get a bad one.

Have you noticed that we haven't said much about foreign cars? Honestly, we think there is a reason. Maybe two. First, they seem to build them better. Yes, we know ... it's unAmerican to say it, but if you think about it, it just might be honest. Second, we think they they "schmooze" the customer better. The simple fact is that if the dealer keeps the customer satisfied or stalled off successfully, then the customer never gets mad enough to go see a lawyer. The result? They never learn their legal rights until it's often too late.

But, and it's an important "but", the foreign manufacturers (even when the car is actually being built here in the USA), the have a "foreign attitude". What does that mean? Simple. If it's a European manufacturer, you can bet they will fight but they usually realize from the start that it's a losing battle. If it's an Asian manufacturer, they fight too, but they never seem to realize (or at least won't admit it) that the car might actually have been built wrong in the first place (they often blame it on the dealer's fouling up its repair attempts).

So what can you do?

Cars are important in daily life. You gotta work, so you gotta drive a car (or truck). Just be careful. Buy the best quality you can afford. And don't drive it off the lot with any promise from the dealer on what they'll do for you later. Anything you want done to the car, you need to make them do before you take delivery. And when things go wrong ... go back and complain and complain and complain. More about "how to complain" in another article later.

For now, if you've got a lemon, email or call us 1-888-331-6422 Toll Free. Getting rid of lemons and getting your money back, that's what we do. Every day.