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Japanese cars slipping in Consumer Reports rankings

AUTOMOTIVE
Japanese cars slipping in rankings

Japan’s lock on Consumer Reports’ vehicle reliability rankings is starting to ease. Three Japanese brands — Lexus, Toyota and Acura — took the top spots in this year’s survey, and seven of the top 10 brands are Japanese. But three non-Japanese brands — Audi, Volvo and GMC — cracked the top 10.

The magazine also announced Monday that it’s not recommending that consumers buy 2014 models of the Honda Accord V6 and Nissan Altima sedans, two of Japan’s top sellers, because of poor reliability scores. Two other Japanese mainstays, the Toyota Camry and Toyota RAV4, won’t be recommended because they flunked a frontal crash test from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Yonkers, N.Y.-based Consumer Reports predicts the reliability of 2014 model year cars and trucks based on a survey of subscribers who own vehicles from current or prior model years. This year, the survey questioned the owners of 1.1 million vehicles.

Problems with infotainment systems, from frozen touch screens to poorly performing voice-operated navigation systems, were frequent complaints.

— Associated Press

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