The annual survey of Chinese vehicle owners ranks vehicles based on problems per 100 vehicles, or PP100, with a lower score indicating fewer problems and therefore a more dependable, higher-quality vehicle, as the table below shows.
Buick registered 175 problems per hundred vehicles, putting it significantly above the segment average of 187 PP100. It was beaten only by FAW Toyota with a score of 142, Changan Ford at 157, GAC Toyota at 166, and SAIC Volkswagen with 174 problems per 100 vehicles.
A year ago, Buick was also a high-ranking marque in the study. However, Buick actually performed better in 2022 than in the 2023 ranking, taking third place and being assessed as less problematic than the current year’s vehicles with a PP100 score of 170. A single Buick nameplate, the Buick Regal, was named as a segment leader in the Midsize Upper Car category, coming in third behind two Toyotas.
Buick also had fewer problems than all the vehicles in the Chinese Domestic Brands segment. The GM brand’s score of 175 indicates five fewer problems than the most dependable Chinese brand, WEY, with a PP100 ranking of 180. The average PP100 score for the made-in-China segment was 202, with 27 more problems per hundred vehicles than the Tri-Shield’s offerings.
Simultaneously, and perhaps not unexpectedly, premium-brand segment vehicles tended to outperform mass-market vehicles in the study. Buick’s 175 problems would have put it at the lower end of premium vehicles, which have 156 PP100 segment average.
Study methodology included surveying 37,973 vehicle owners in 81 Chinese cities, choosing individuals who had bought a new vehicle from the included brands during the past 13 to 48 months. The survey asked these vehicle owners to report problems with their cars between January and June 2023, inclusive.
Problem categories included issues with “exterior; interior; driving experience; features/controls/displays (FCD); infotainment; climate; seats; powertrain; and driving assistance” features of the vehicles.
Considering the China market as a whole, the level of vehicle dependability remained stable between 2022 and 2023. J.D. Power manager Elvis Yang offered an opinion on the automakers’ current attitude, noting “although manufacturers regard quality above everything else, some do not pay enough attention to quality after the warranty period.”