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EVs not as reliable as conventional cars, trucks: Consumer Reports

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EVs not as reliable as conventional cars, trucks: Consumer Reports

Robert Besser
04 Dec 2023, 19:22 GMT+10

  • A survey by Consumer Reports found that EVs from 2021 through 2023 model years encountered nearly 80 percent more problems than cars, trucks, and SUVs powered by internal combustion engines
  • The magazine and website said that EV owners most frequently reported issues with battery and charging systems, as well as flaws in the built quality of body panels and interiors
  • EV manufacturers are still learning how to construct completely new power systems, and the overall reliability of EVs should improve, it added

NEW YORK: A survey by Consumer Reports found that electric vehicles (EV) from 2021 through 2023 model years encountered nearly 80 percent more problems than cars, trucks, and SUVs powered by internal combustion engines.

The magazine and website said that EV owners most frequently reported issues with battery and charging systems, as well as flaws in the built quality of body panels and interiors.

EV manufacturers are still learning how to construct completely new power systems, and the overall reliability of EVs should improve, it added.

Jake Fisher, senior director of auto testing at Consumer Reports, said, “It is a story of just working out the bugs and the kinks of new technology.”

However, the publication stressed that lingering concerns about reliability, higher costs, few charging stations, and long charging times will add to the issues stopping buyers from switching to the new technology.

The Consumer Reports survey also showed that plug-in hybrids, which can travel on battery power before a gas-electric engine takes over, have more issues than fully electric vehicles.

Plug-ins contain two separate and complex power systems, so they are more likely to experience problems, Fisher said, noting that brands that over time have generally proved less reliable, such as Jeep and Volvo, have started mass-producing plug-in hybrids.

However, tried-and-true integrated gas-electric hybrid systems are more reliable than gasoline vehicles, as they have been used for about a quarter-century, and the bugs have been mostly solved, he added.

Consumer Reports said its survey of subscribers, representing 330,000 vehicles, was conducted last spring and summer.

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