• Kia jumped six spots to earn the #1 position among mass-market brands
  • Sorento, Sportage, and Optima ranked #1 in their respective segments
  • Latest honour augments Kia’s incredible track record after ranking highest in J.D. Power’s annual Initial Quality Study for six consecutive years
  • In addition, Kia’s e-Niro named category winner in new J.D. Power Electric Vehicle Experience Ownership Study
26 February 2021 – Kia was ranked number one among mass-market brands by J.D. Power in the 2021 Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) in the U.S.A., with a reported 97 problems per 100 vehicles. The achievement has been strengthened by three of Kia’s most popular-selling models – the Sorento, Sportage, and Optima – each besting their respective segments.

“Earning the top spot among mass-market brands in J.D. Power’s Vehicle Dependability Study is another new benchmark achievement for Kia’s meteoric rise in the industry”, said Sean Yoon, president & CEO, Kia North America & Kia America. “This substantial award bolsters our track record in initial quality and shows that the ‘new car lustre’ of our world-class vehicles extends far beyond the first 90 days of ownership. Kia owners continue to enjoy and feel confident in their vehicles as the years go by, especially knowing they’re backed by our industry-leading warranty.”

The J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study measures the number of problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) experienced over the last year by owners of their three-year-old vehicles, meaning this study focused on 2018 model year vehicles. It includes 32 nameplates and 153 models, covering problem symptoms grouped into eight major vehicle categories (Seats, HVAC, Features/Controls/Displays (FCD), Driving Experience, Interior, Engine/Transmission, Exterior, Audio/Communication/Entertainment/Navigation (ACEN).

At the same time, the Kia e-Niro was named a category winner in the new J.D. Power Electric Vehicle Experience Ownership Study. Both the 2019 and 2020 e-Niro models earned the top spot in the Mass-Market Category and this efficient crossover ranked highest in overall EV ownership satisfaction.

For this inaugural study, J.D. Power surveyed nearly 10,000 electric vehicles (EV) owners on factors including cost-of-ownership, battery range, and driving enjoyment to determine the likelihood of repurchasing and recommending an EV.

“This is another important accolade for the e-Niro, further underlying the successful impact it has had on the electric vehicle market since its launch. It’s not easy to be a market leader in this segment but that’s exactly what the e-Niro is, delivering emissions-free driving capability and high-tech interior quality in a crossover that is practical, functional and fun,” said Jason Jeong, President at Kia Europe.

“Being named mass-market category winner at the EVX Ownership Study is testament to how well our current-generation electric vehicles have been received by owners and it positions us nicely heading into the future as we prepare to launch 11 exciting next-generation EVs by 2025. The shift to electrification has entered a new phase and we’re proud to be at the very forefront of that momentum.”

With a strong existing line-up of electric vehicles and an eye toward future transportation, Kia is moving forward with the implementation of ‘Plan S’ and will invest $25 billion by 2025 on the future of electrification, mobility services, connectivity, and autonomy.

The Kia e-Niro opens a world of possibilities for drivers who are drawn toward popular crossovers but also want the benefits that electric vehicles offer. With 395 Nm of torque and four drive modes, the e-Niro’s robust electric powertrain gets drivers where they need to go – quickly – while enjoying advanced technology and connectivity in a stylish package that fits every lifestyle.

The U.S. EVX Ownership Study, driven by a collaboration with PlugShare, sets the standard for benchmarking satisfaction with the critical attributes that affect the EV ownership experience. The overall EVX ownership index score measures electric vehicle owners’ satisfaction (on a 1,000-point scale) in premium and mass-market segments across seven factors: accuracy of stated battery range; availability of public charging stations; battery range; the cost of ownership; driving enjoyment; ease of charging at home; and vehicle quality and reliability.

Note: This year’s J.D Power study was fielded in October-November 2020 and surveyed 9,632 owners of 2015-2021 model year BEVs and PHEVs.