J.D. Power and Associates Reports: General Motors' Oshawa, Ontario, Car Plant Receives Silver Plant Quality Award

    Two Canadian-Built Models Receive Initial Quality Awards in their
Respective Segments

    TORONTO, June 22 /CNW/ -- The General Motors Oshawa, Ontario (car), plant
receives the Silver Plant Quality Award in the North/South America region,
averaging just 42 problems per 100 vehicles, according to the J.D. Power and
Associates 2009 U.S. Initial Quality Study(SM) (IQS) released today.  This GM
plant produces the Buick Allure (sold as the Buick LaCrosse in the U.S.) and
Chevrolet Impala. The study captures problems experienced by owners in two
distinct categories -- design-related problems and defects and malfunctions.
Plant awards are based solely on defect and malfunction counts.

    (Logo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20050527/LAF028LOGO-a)

    Aside from the General Motors Oshawa, Ontario (car) plant, two other
Canadian plants rank among the top 15 in terms of initial quality for the
North and South American plants included in the study. The plants are: Toyota
Motor Corporation's Cambridge, Ontario, plant and General Motors' Ingersoll,
Ontario, plant.

    "General Motors' arrangement to continue vehicle production in Canada has
proven to be a sound business decision," said Gary Dilts, senior vice
president of global automotive at J.D. Power and Associates. "This win-win
situation has yielded top-quality vehicles for GM and continued employment and
industrial output for the Canadian economy."

    Two Canadian-made vehicle models receive segment awards, while three
additional models rank within the top three in their respective segments.
These high-ranking Canadian-built models are:

    Highest-Ranking Models
    --  Ford Edge (Ford Motor Company's Oakville, Ontario, plant) ranks
        in the midsize multi-activity vehicle (MAV) segment (in a tie with the
        Chevrolet Trailblazer and Toyota 4Runner)

    --  Honda Ridgeline (Honda Canada's Alliston, Ontario, plant) ranks
        in the midsize pickup segment

    Top-Three-Ranking Models
    --  Lexus RX (Toyota Motor Corporation's Cambridge, Ontario, plant) ranks
        second in the midsize premium MAV segment(1)
    --  Chevrolet Impala (General Motors' Oshawa, Ontario (car), plant) ranks
        third in the large car segment

    --  Honda Civic (Honda Canada's Alliston, Ontario, plant) ranks third in
        the compact car segment(1)

    "Canadian automotive plants continue to build some of the highest-quality
vehicles in the world," said Darren Slind, senior director, national
automotive practice leader of J.D. Power and Associates Canadian operations.
"Despite the industry downturn in 2009, several Ontario communities continue
to deliver high-quality vehicles to the North American market, as evidenced by
the success of both the Ford Edge and Honda Ridgeline, both highest-ranked
vehicles in their respective segments."

    2009 Plant Quality Award Recipients
    The Toyota Motor Corporation assembly plant in Higashi-Fuji, Japan,
receives the Platinum Plant Quality Award for producing vehicles yielding the
fewest defects and malfunctions. Averaging just 29 problems per 100 vehicles,
(PP100), the plant produces the Lexus SC 430 and Toyota Corolla. Lower PP100
scores indicate a lower rate of problem incidences and higher quality.

    Among North and South American plants, the Honda plant in East Liberty,
Ohio, which produces the Civic Sedan, CR-V and Element, achieves the Gold
Plant Quality Award.

    In the Europe and Africa region, Daimler's East London, South Africa,
plant, which produces the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, receives the Gold Plant
Quality Award.

    2009 U.S. Initial Quality Study Findings
    New vehicles sold by Chrysler, Ford and GM's U.S. brands have improved in
initial quality by an average of 10 percent, compared with 2008, surpassing
the 8-percent rate of improvement by the industry overall.

    Overall, the industry average for initial quality is 108 problems per 100
vehicles in 2009, down from 118 PP100 in 2008. Initial quality for U.S. brands
has improved to an average of 112 PP100 in 2009 from 124 PP100 in 2008.

    "Even in the face of unprecedented challenges, the Detroit automakers are
keeping their focus on designing and building high-quality vehicles, which is
a precondition for long-term success," said David Sargent, vice president of
automotive research at J.D. Power and Associates. "High quality generally
translates into reduced re-engineering costs and lower warranty expenses
during a vehicle's life cycle.  High quality also enhances an automaker's
reputation for reliability, which is a critical purchase consideration for
many consumers."

    In addition to the marked improvement by Detroit automakers, many Asian
and European brands continued to perform well in 2009. Lexus leads the overall
nameplate rankings, averaging 84 PP100. Following in the rankings are Porsche,
Cadillac (which moves from 10th rank position in 2008 to third in 2009),
Hyundai (improves from 13th rank position in 2008 to fourth in 2009) and
Honda, rounding out the top five. Suzuki posts the largest improvement in
ranking, moving from 32nd place in 2008 to ninth in 2009.

    The study finds that initial quality for newly launched and redesigned
models in 2009 has improved, compared with previous years. Historically,
all-new models have typically launched with below-average levels of initial
quality. However, several all-new models in 2009, including the Hyundai
Genesis, Kia Borrego, Toyota Venza and Volkswagen CC, perform considerably
better than their respective segment averages. Many redesigned models in 2009
also show notable improvement from the previous generation--particularly the
Acura TL, Ford F-150, Honda Pilot and Nissan Z.

    "Achieving high levels of initial quality in all-new models is one of the
greatest challenges for manufacturers," said Sargent. "Now that more
manufacturers are getting their launch quality right straight out of the gate,
consumers can expect the quality of new vehicles to continue to rise."

    The U.S. Initial Quality Study serves as the industry benchmark for
new-vehicle quality measured at 90 days of ownership. The study is used
extensively by vehicle manufacturers worldwide to help them design and build
better vehicles and by consumers to help them in their vehicle purchase
decisions. Initial quality has been shown over the years to be an excellent
predictor of long-term durability, which can significantly impact consumer
purchase decisions.

    2009 U.S. IQS Ranking Highlights
    Toyota Motor Corporation captures 10 segment awards--more than any other
corporation in the 2009 study--five for Lexus, four for Toyota and one for
Scion. Lexus receives awards for the IS, GS, GX, LS and LX models. The Lexus
LX has the fewest quality problems in the industry, with just 52 PP100. Toyota
models receiving awards in their respective segments are the 4Runner (in a
tie); Sienna; Tundra (in a tie); and Yaris.

    Ford receives three awards for the Edge (in a tie); F-150 (in a tie); and
Mustang. Garnering two awards each are Nissan (Altima and Z); and Honda (CR-V,
in a tie, and Ridgeline).

    Also receiving segment awards are: Chevrolet Trailblazer (in a tie),
Chrysler PT Cruiser Wagon (in a tie), GMC Yukon, Hyundai Elantra Sedan,
Mercury Sable and Scion tC.

    The 2009 U.S. Initial Quality Study is based on responses from more than
80,900 purchasers and lessees of new 2009 model-year cars, trucks and
multi-activity vehicles surveyed after 90 days of ownership. The study is
based on a 228-question battery designed to provide manufacturers with
information to facilitate identifying problems and drive product improvement.
The study was fielded between February and May 2009.

    Find more detailed results on new-vehicle quality performance as well as
model photos and specs by reading an article, browsing a photo gallery and
reviewing quality ratings at JDPower.com


    2009 Nameplate IQS Ranking
    Problems per 100 Vehicles

    Lexus                84
    Porsche              90
    Cadillac             91
    Hyundai              95
    Honda                99
    Mercedes-Benz        101
    Toyota               101
    Ford                 102
    Chevrolet            103
    Suzuki               103
    Infiniti             106
    Mercury              106
    Industry Average     108
    Nissan               110
    Acura                111
    BMW                  112
    Kia                  112
    Volkswagen           112
    GMC                  116
    Buick                117
    Audi                 118
    Pontiac              118
    Scion                118
    Volvo                118
    Saturn               120
    Mazda                123
    Lincoln              129
    Subaru               130
    Dodge                134
    Jaguar               134
    Mitsubishi           135
    Chrysler             136
    HUMMER               136
    Jeep                 137
    SAAB                 138
    smart                138
    Land Rover           150
    MINI                 165


    Top Three Models per Segment
    Car Segments

    Sub-Compact Car
    Highest Ranked: Toyota Yaris
    Hyundai Accent
    Honda Fit

    Compact Car
    Highest Ranked: Hyundai Elantra Sedan
    Toyota Prius
    Honda Civic

    Compact Sporty Car(*)
    Highest Ranked: Scion tC
    Volkswagen GTI

    Compact Premium Sporty Car(*)
    Highest Ranked: Nissan Z
    Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class

    Entry Premium Vehicle
    Highest Ranked: Lexus IS
    Cadillac CTS (tie)
    Infiniti G-Series (tie)

    Midsize Premium Car
    Highest Ranked: Lexus GS
    Acura RL
    Lexus ES

    Midsize Sporty Car(*)
    Highest Ranked: Ford Mustang

    Large Premium Car(*)
    Highest Ranked: Lexus LS
    Mercedes-Benz S-Class

    Midsize Car
    Highest Ranked: Nissan Altima
    Pontiac G6
    Chevrolet Malibu

    Large Car
    Highest Ranked: Mercury Sable
    Toyota Avalon
    Chevrolet Impala

    NOTE: For a segment award to be issued, there must be at least three
models with sufficient sample that comprise 80 percent of market sales within
an award segment.  There were only two premium sporty models and no large van
models with sufficient sample size, thus no premium sporty or large van awards
have been issued.

    (*)No other model in this segment performs above the segment average.


    Top Three Models per Segment
    Truck/Multi-Activity Vehicle (MAV) Segments

    Compact MAV
    Highest Ranked: Chrysler PT Cruiser Wagon (tie); Honda CR-V (tie)
    Mitsubishi Outlander

    Midsize MAV
    Highest Ranked: Chevrolet TrailBlazer (tie); Ford Edge (tie);
    Toyota 4Runner (tie)

    Large MAV(*)
    Highest Ranked: GMC Yukon
    Chevrolet Tahoe

    Midsize Premium MAV
    Highest Ranked: Lexus GX
    Lexus RX
    Cadillac SRX

    Large Premium MAV
    Highest Ranked: Lexus LX
    Cadillac Escalade
    Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

    Large Pickup
    Highest Ranked: Ford F-150 (tie); Toyota Tundra (tie)
    Chevrolet Avalanche

    Midsize Pickup
    Highest Ranked: Honda Ridgeline
    Nissan Frontier
    Ford Ranger

    Highest Ranked: Toyota Sienna
    Honda Odyssey

    NOTE: For a segment award to be issued, there must be at least three
models with sufficient sample that comprise 80 percent of market sales within
an award segment.  There were only two premium sporty models and no large van
models with sufficient sample size, thus no premium sporty or large van awards
have been issued.
    (*)No other model in this segment performs above the segment average.


    2009 Assembly Plant Quality Award Recipients
    Based on Vehicles Produced for U.S. Market

    Award                       PP100              Model(s) Produced at Plant
                                malfunctions only)

    Platinum Award
    Toyota Motor  Corporation
    -- Higashi-Fuji, Japan            29            Lexus SC and Toyota

    North/South America

    Gold Award
    Honda Motor Company
    -- East Liberty, Ohio             41            Honda Civic, CR-V and

    Silver Award
    General Motors Corporation
    -- Oshawa, Ontario (Car)          42            Buick LaCrosse and
                                                   Chevrolet Impala

    Bronze Award
    Ford Motor Company
    -- Kentucky Truck                 43            Ford F-250/F-350 Super

    Bronze Award
    General Motors Corporation
    -- Bowling Green, KY              43            Cadillac XLR and
                                                   Chevrolet Corvette

    Bronze Award
    Toyota Motor Corporation
    -- Georgetown, KY                 43            Toyota Avalon, Camry and

    Asia Pacific

    Silver Award
    Toyota Motor Corporation
    -- Fujimatsu, Japan               30            Toyota Prius

    Bronze Award
    Toyota Motor Corporation
    -- Kyushu, Japan                  34            Lexus ES; IS; and RX;
                                                   Toyota Highlander

    Europe and Africa

    Gold Award
    -- East London, South Africa      38            Mercedes-Benz C-Class

    Silver Award
    -- Dingolfing, Germany            40            BMW 5 Series and 6 Series

    Silver Award
    -- Bremen, Germany                40            Mercedes-Benz C-Class;
                                                   SL-Class; and SLK-Class

    About J.D. Power and Associates
    Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a
global marketing information services company operating in key business
sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement,
training and customer satisfaction.  The company's quality and satisfaction
measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. J.D.
Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

    About The McGraw-Hill Companies
    Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies is a leading global
information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial
services, education and business information markets through leading brands
such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Power
and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries.
Sales in 2007 were $6.8 billion. Additional information is available at

    J.D. Power and Associates Media Relations Contacts:
    John Tews; Troy, Mich.; (248) 312-4119; media.relations@jdpa.com
    Syvetril Perryman; Westlake Village, Calif.; (805) 418-8103;

    No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in
this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and
Associates. www.jdpower.com/corporate.

    (1) Of the units sold in the United States of this model, a portion are
produced in Canada.


For further information:

For further information: John Tews, +1-248-312-4119, or Syvetril
Perryman, +1-805-418-8103, both of J.D. Power and Associates,
media.relations@jdpa.com Web Site: http://www.jdpower.com                

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