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New report lists the most and least recalled vehicles

Most new vehicles will have a recall or two in the first few years. But a new report lists some trouble-free brands with few recalls.
Posted at 7:05 AM, Jun 02, 2023

It's safe to say that most drivers will deal with a recall at some point. While the repair is free, it is often frustrating to leave your car for a day and maybe (or maybe not) get a loaner car.

But if you want to avoid the hassle, there are specific brands and vehicles with a much lower recall rate than others.

Matt Overbeck owns an auto repair shop, Overbeck Auto Services, and always finds cars coming in with unprepared recalls.

"Absolutely, every day," he said.

Overbeck says many of us just don't get around to having recalls fixed.

"Sometimes those notices go unnoticed," he said.

So he checks every incoming car on a centralized database to make sure it has no unprepared recalls.

"We will look it up there and then notify that customer there is an open recall," he said.

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Brands seeing the most and fewest recalls

According to a recent study from iSeeCars.com, the average number of lifetime projected recalls for the average car is four.

Of the vehicles with the fewest expected recalls, it lists:

- Mercedes-Benz

- Lexus

- Toyota

Of the 25 most recalled cars, brands with models on the list four times each include:

- Tesla

- Porsche

iSeeCars analyst Karl Brauer" says one recall out of the gate is fairly common, but multiple recalls can indicate problems.

"What's more disturbing is when they continue to just keep having recalls," he said. "That's where the data really pointed to cars that were just going to be troublesome for a longer period."

We asked Brauer if he expects more recalls on electric cars.

"They have a much simpler, more streamlined drive train," he said. "So there should be fewer parts that could be recalled."

One positive: Many recalls today are OTA, or over-the-air, which means they don't require a dealership visit.

"That means some of its problems are solvable by software update, kind of like your phone," he said.

The most important thing is to always bring your recalled vehicle in for the necessary fix, or, as Matt Overbeck warns, it could be a rolling safety hazard.

"A couple of years ago, we had a large airbag recall," he said. "There's many of those cars on the road that have not been repaired yet."

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