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Kia Motors wins best initial quality awards in America

Posted June. 26, 2020 07:40,   

Updated June. 26, 2020 07:40


Kia Motors Corporation has been chosen as a producer of the best-quality cars by American consumers. All in all, three brands under Hyundai Motor Group have been ranked within top 10, with Genesis and Hyundai Motor being ranked in the fifth and tenth, respectively.

In the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Initial Quality Study, Kia Motors Corporation was tied for the highest in overall initial quality along with American automobile brand Dodge among 31 automobile manufacturers.

The last time Kia topped the list was three years back in 2017. The list of competitors includes Hyundai, Kia, Toyota, and Chevrolet, as well as premium brands such as Genesis, Lexus and Mercedes Benz. Kia posted a score of 136 points, much lower than the average 166. The survey was conducted for a total 87,282 drivers who purchased a car in America from the 31 brands (189 models) between November last year and February this year, quantifying the level of complaints in 233 segments such as driving experience, engine and transmission performance during the first 90 days of driving. The lower the score turns out to be, the better the quality is.

Experts say Kia’s preval‎ence reflects the carmaker’s swift response to introduce trendy SUV models that can appeal to American consumers and the overall improvement ranging from driving performance to more user-friendly features offered by cutting-edge electronic devices. Of the four Kia models that won the best quality award this time, three were SUVs - Soul, Sorento, Carnival.

The models feature convenient user interfaces activated by a button or voice and also offer much enhanced safety features such as parking assistance and collision prevention.

Meanwhile, Kia’s sales barely dipped in May when the U.S. car market suffered extreme recession, with the sales of Sorento and Sportage falling 13% and 5% each year-on-year, drawing a sharp contrast with passenger sedans whose sales plummeted by 20 to 30%.

Hyung-Seok Seo skytree08@donga.com