February 23, 2012 9:22 AM | By Mark Toljagic for MSN Autos
J.D. Power's 10 most dependable car brands for 2012

Which companies make the most trouble-free cars, trucks and SUVs?



Which companies make the most trouble-free cars, trucks and SUVs? (© Photo: Anders Blomqvist/Lonely Planet/Getty Images)
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Despite a turbulent year that saw two bankrupted U.S. auto manufacturers restructure their operations and a third re-mortgage everything it owned to stay afloat in 2009, the industry managed to keep its collective eye on the ball and put together vehicles with historically high levels of quality, according to J.D. Power and Associates.

Last fall, the market research firm surveyed more than 31,000 American owners of 2009-model cars and trucks to document their quality concerns after three years of ownership. J.D. Power's benchmark 2012 Vehicle Dependability Study reveals 25 of 32 automotive brands have improved their quality scores, and only six have declined. One marque, Buick, remains unchanged.

In the study, dependability is expressed as the number of reported problems per 100 vehicles (PP100), with a lower score reflecting higher quality. Across the industry, vehicle dependability averaged 132 PP100 - a 13 per cent improvement compared to last year's average of 151 - which is the lowest problem rate since the study was established in 1990. Let's examine the 10 best-rated nameplates in the dependability study, ranked from 10th to first.

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