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Survey shows poor car design is major source of complaints | Updated: 2022-09-01 15:25
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SAIC Maxus shows its models at the 2022 Chengdu auto show. [Photo by LI QIANG/FOR CHINA DAILY]

Car owners in China have more complaints about their newly bought vehicles this year than in 2021, and most of the complaints are about poor designs, according to a J.D. Power study.

The study, whose results were released on Thursday, showed that there are 213 problems per 100 vehicles this year, 2.8 problems more than last year.

The findings are based on responses from 3,914 vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between June 2021 and March 2022.

A total of 247 models from 56 different brands were involved in the study conducted in 70 major cities across China.

There were 143 design-related problems per 100 vehicles in the study, up 4.2 problems than in 2021.

Specifically, the exterior of vehicles, unpleasant smells inside the vehicles as well as excessive road noise were the most cited problems.

But carmakers have made some improvements as well, mostly in infotainment, driving-assist functions and air conditioning.

"The improvement of vehicle quality is not overnight," said Elvis Yang, general manager of auto product practice, J.D. Power China.

"With the advent of the intelligence era, the quality problems caused by design is rising. Manufacturers should pay more attention to the R&D and design stage to improve new-vehicle quality," said Yang.

The study shows that Porsche ranked highest in initial quality among luxury brands with 163 problems per 100 vehicles, followed by Lexus at 166 problems per 100 vehicles, and Land Rover, 179 problems per 100 vehicles.

Sino-Japanese joint venture GAC Honda was the highest-ranked mass market brand for a third consecutive year with 193 problems per 100 vehicles.

Dongfeng Honda, another Chinese joint venture of Honda, ranked second at 205 problems per 100 vehicles, and Buick came third at 207 problems per 100 vehicles.

Of Chinese carmakers, Changan was the highest-ranked brand with 209 problems per 100 vehicles.

It was followed by Chery, 215 problems per 100 vehicles, and GAC Trumpchi, which saw 215 problems per 100 vehicles as well.

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