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Hyundai Climbs Ladder in J.D. Power 2018 Initial Quality Study

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2018 Hyundai Tucson

J.D. Power has completed its annual Initial Quality Study, and Hyundai made out pretty well, with a smattering of awards across a couple areas.

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The first, most general award went to Hyundai as a whole, as the study found the brand ranked second-highest out of all non-premium brands. Hyundai also ranked as one of the most improved brands, rising from its former place of sixth overall to third place, reducing problems per 100 vehicles by 14.

In more specific model segments, the Hyundai Tucson took top place in small SUVs, and the fourth-best vehicle overall, while the Santa Fe took second in mid-size SUVs. Finally, Hyundai’s South Korean Ulsan Plant, which produces the title-winning Tucson, received a Bronze Plant Assembly Line Quality Award for the Asia Pacific Region.

J.D. Power measures a vehicle or brand’s initial quality by interviewing owners after the first 90 days of ownership, then scoring the vehicle or brand on the number of issues per 100 vehicles. Hyundai had 74 problems per 100 vehicles, handily beating the industry average of 93 problems per 100 vehicles.

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Hyundai also ranked well in J.D. Power’s 2018 Vehicle Dependability Study (which studies vehicles after 3 years of ownership), taking third place in non-premium brands, with the Tucson also taking the top prize in that study.

Hyundai, of course, is delighted both by its awards and by its overall improvement. Omar Rivera, director of Quality and Service Engineering for Hyundai Motor America, said, “Customers of the Hyundai brand can feel confident that they are selecting a new vehicle that has one of the best initial and long-term quality rankings in the entire automotive industry. J.D. Power’s IQS is the industry benchmark for new-vehicle quality, and our 2018 ranking is a result of an enterprise-wide commitment to producing vehicles of the highest quality and educating customers on how to use their car’s technologies and features.”