Are japanese cars more reliable than european/french cars?

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  • Are japanese cars more reliable than european/french cars?
  • walla24
    Member

    Thinking older, circa 2000 vehicles…any opinions?

    sbob
    Member

    Around that time the most reliable cars were Hondas built in the UK.

    coffeeking
    Member

    Japanese design philosophy seems somewhat better than European, generally. They’re more expensive when they do go wrong but much much less likely to go wrong.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Generally yes. Check up reliability surveys.. Can you go back in time for them? Although back then VW were also good, it was before a period of cock ups.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    Comparing my Yaris with the Touran, the Yaris is designed with fixing and unbolting in mind. The VW is all plastic covers and non-serviceable units. Maybe the two years in between manufacture, but it seems a Toyota design thing.

    Premier Icon Onzadog
    Subscriber

    We’ve got a 97 Toyota Corolla with 130,000 miles on it. It will not die and when it gets a bit poorly, it cost buttons to fix.

    Cost less to run that my 2005 Astra.

    project
    Member

    Toyota engines assembled in north wales, cars built in the north east,

    Nissan and Honda, assembled in the uk,

    we also have indian range rover land rovers,Jaguars,

    at least youre be helping british workers afford to buy stuff

    butcher
    Member

    Around that time the most reliable cars are Hondas built in the UK.

    I have a 2000 Honda. 14 year old and it’s passed every MOT since I bought it 3 years ago. In that time I’ve changed the exhaust (was knackered when I bought it), the battery, brake pads and a couple of bulbs. Engine runs like new with 120k on it.

    In my own personal experience, every Japanese car I’ve had has been bombproof (and I’ve rarely bought cars newer than 10 years old). Every British car I’ve owned on the other hand, has been made of cheese, quickly finding themselves on the scrapheap.

    Post 2000 I doubt there’s anything in it. The real peak of the Japanese car industry was in the 80s I reckon. It just took everyone else over a decade to catch up.

    Premier Icon singlespeedstu
    Subscriber

    We’ve had a “Y” reg Yaris from new.
    I was one of the last to be built in Japan.
    It’s still on the original exhaust, clutch, everything…

    Edukator
    Member

    Look around you, what do you see? I see lots of old cars still on the road and very few of them are Japanese. Manufacturers keep spares available for a limited time after the end of production, after that a hard-to-find spare can send an otherwise good car to the breakers.

    rc200f8
    Member

    I work for a main dealer that sells Vauxhall, Suzuki, Seat and Hyundai, the Suzukis are by far the most reliable

    sbob
    Member

    I drive a ’95 Micra. It never goes wrong but then there isn’t that much to go wrong. 😆

    Used to drive a VTEC Honda and did a lot of hard miles in it. There was not one journey I’d make where it wouldn’t see the 8,500rpm redline.
    The fan stopped working on settings 1 and 2.
    Two new resistors, £1.30.

    sbob
    Member

    Edukator – Troll

    Look around you, what do you see?

    Shit loads of older Japanese cars.

    butcher
    Member

    Look around you, what do you see? I see lots of old cars still on the road and very few of them are Japanese.

    I’d say it was the other way round. Up to 10 years old, there are huge amounts of British and European cars, I’m guessing because they’re sold in such huge amounts in the first place. Which would make a lot of sense – British cars being sold in Britain, and that. But going back 15+ years , I’m sure a lot of those cars I see are Japanese. A few VAG cars. Very few British or French. But maybe those are just the ones I notice.

    Our Toyota Rav is now 10 years and 120,000 miles old and mechanically is like new. I can’t think of anything that’s failed, and it even seems light on consumables. Doesn’t use oil. Still on original clutch. No rattles. Annual servicing costs have been a few hundred quid on average.

    Much better than the the various VAG products I’ve burnt money on running during the same period.

    I like Toyota.

    cheekyboy
    Member

    West Africa runs on Toyota and the the odd petrol vw/audi converted to CNG

    piemonster
    Member

    Yep, stacks of old Japanese cars about.

    Seems like an endorsement.

    boabym
    Member

    I work for a original equipment supplier (bearings) I tend to purchase SEAT as I fins them the most hardy a nd reliable .

    My 1999 Nissan Almera has been faultless. Obviously a few things have worn out (but only in the last few years).

    b r
    Member

    Also maybe something to do with folk that buy them, and the use they get – plus servicing.

    Young lass hit a big pothole near us (rural) last night, and punctured. Turned out that not only was that tyre bald, but her spare was also bald and flat (she’d not had it fixed from the last puncture). I can’t imagine that she serviced her car either, it was a newish Peugeot. Now people say that French cars aren’t reliable, but if their owners don’t actually look after them; what do they expect?

    coffeeking
    Member

    Look around you, what do you see? I see lots of old cars still on the road and very few of them are Japanese. Manufacturers keep spares available for a limited time after the end of production, after that a hard-to-find spare can send an otherwise good car to the breakers

    Loads of japanese cars. And I still get all required spares for my 24 year old japanese car. Go into a scrap yard, you will see countless dozens of fords, Peugeot, Citroens and vauxhauls, very few japanese.

    I don’t want to tempt fate but my wifes 05 corolla has already done 120k and is so far running strong. Had no service costs other than consumables and she does at least 70 miles a day 5 days a week. When it finally does die i’ll be looking for another one but i’m hoping that’s some time off yet.

    qu1nt
    Member

    Are japanese cars more reliable than european/french cars?

    Yes, by quite a bit

    With cars of that age, you’re taking a chance either way.

    Source: have only ever owned mid-to-late 90s cars, currently a 1999 Lexus IS200 and a 1998 Clio.

    The Jap ones are infinitely easier to fix yourself though, and therefore cheaper to run. Clio and Lexus have both had issues recently, but the Clio is the one we’re trying to ignore (immobiliser circuit knackered) as it’ll cost 3x the car’s value to put right. Lexus is a Lambda sensor issue, just waiting for the replacement sensor in the post.

    FWIW, the most reliable (Mazda RX7, believe it or not) and least reliable (Legnum VR4) cars I’ve owned have both been Japanese.

    Premier Icon cheshirecat
    Subscriber

    We had a Nissan Almera when we needed a reliable car (i.e. small kids). In 8 years it had a light bulb and a section of exhaust. Way better than any car, before or since.

    It was extremely dull though, but actually very nice to drive.

    Premier Icon righog
    Subscriber

    After a huge amount of research i decided to buy a 1996 Toyota and pay £3,500 for the privileged. So far I have not regretted my decision.

    samuri
    Member

    I’ve had loads of british cars. Always needed loads of work doing on them, always cost a fortune. Had a few french cars, they were even worse. They’d break just by sitting on the drive. Had a couple of german cars which have been very well put together, mostly reliable but expensive when they do fail.

    Best car ever is my honda accord though. Fricking awesome. It just keeps going, sails through every single MOT with a new bulb or some brake pads, runs like a dream, pulls like a train. Brilliant.

    It’s an ’05 plate and every know and again I’ll have a look at autotrader 330’s and A4’s and think I really should sell it and get something newer, less aged and more flashy but then I realise it’s ace and I’d be stupid to get rid.

    redstripe
    Member

    Gave up on the VW and Merc cars and vans I use to drive a few years ago, fed up with things going wrong and the costs, and switched to Toyota, totally reliable and no regrets, never go wrong. Motorbikes – only ever buy Honda for the same reason

    chewkw
    Member

    My preference is only for Toyota or other Japs made cars. Don’t care if it looks ugly so long as it’s reliable and low in maintenance cost. My 2005 Corolla Auto gear has 31k++ mileage on the clock so I guess it will last me a while yet before I get another one.

    The only costly replacement I have had so far is the ABS sensor going kaput. Other than that just normal wear and tear.

    Also whenever I fill up the tank I would mix about 100ml to 200ml 2T motorbike engine oil to it, making the engine quieter and smoother. No harm to the car as my dragster racing mate has been doing so for many years. 🙂

    Premier Icon Trekster
    Subscriber

    Our Toyota Rav is now 10 years and 120,000 miles old and mechanically is like new. I can’t think of anything that’s failed, and it even seems light on consumables. Doesn’t use oil.

    Spotted a much newer one the other day emitting rather a lot of blue smoke from its exhaust ❗

    gaznewns
    Member

    Depends where in Europe easier to say brands. Basically avoid Peugeot Citroen fiat

    Good around 2000 vw skoda ford (yes a around then getting great build quality and still not that bad!).

    But then yes Japanese is good stuff!

    Everyone has an opinion…..

    AdamW
    Member

    My 2002 Toyota Yaris has done about 110,000 miles and is a good little runner (that just about manages my Trek in the rear). I’m hoping to keep it to 150,000 miles. Then I may replace it with an Auris.

    Premier Icon Sim
    Subscriber

    Had an ’04 Honda Accord. Most unreliable car I’ve owned, and I’ve owned a Megane.
    Bought a Honda as I wanted trouble free motoring and got anything but, was constantly going wrong, my uncle’s Accord has been similarly disappointing.

    b r
    Member

    Also maybe something to do with folk that buy them, and the use they get

    And based upon the above, I’m not that far wrong – 10 y/o cars with 100k on, I use to do that in under 3 years in French/British/German cars.

    Most reliable car I ever had was a Xantia TD, 160k in 4 years from new – and pretty much every mile driven hard on company-fuel.

    large418
    Member

    Chewkw, adding engine oil to the fuel will poison the catalyst and oxygen sensors. Your driving style may burn off the poisons but it is a bad thing to do. Dragster engines are a little different to car engines.

    trail_rat
    Member

    Chewk – hope its a diesel.

    butcher
    Member

    Had an ’04 Honda Accord. Most unreliable car I’ve owned, and I’ve owned a Megane.

    There seems to be a lot of unhappy customers with ‘newer’ Japanese cars, from what I’ve read. Especially people who have moved from older to newer models and been disappointed. I’m sure some of them are great still, but post 2000 they’re definitely not quite the standard that they were. The Japanese economy has been stagnant for over a decade. Things change. And also there’s globalisation. Nissan are now part owned by Renault, for example. That sounds like a marriage made in hell. And so many cars now share a fundamental framework despite being created by completely different manufacturers. Unless you go into niche markets, I’m not sure there is such a thing as a Japanese car or a British car any more. They’re just cars, created by manufacturers, globally.

    It pains me, because I’m unsure if I’ll ever find (almost) trouble free motoring again with a car older than 10 years.

    Premier Icon slowoldman
    Subscriber

    Well my current VW is at 147k and running OK with only a couple of niggles. I’ve had a couple of Rovers in the past to well over 140k and running well (Hondas I suppose).

    I quite fancy a C3 Picasso but I know there lies madness.

    chewkw
    Member

    large418 – Member

    Chewkw, adding engine oil to the fuel will poison the catalyst and oxygen sensors.

    trail_rat – Member

    Chewk – hope its a diesel.

    Petrol engine but it will work for diesel too. Before I tried it my friend told me he would buy me a new car if my engine go kaput.

    Well I have been doing so for the past 3 years now. Car still run as smooth as the first day I bought it but quieter. If it is a problem then my mate’s car would be dead many times over. Just add 100ml or so if you are unsure so it will burn it off easily.

    hora
    Member

    Had an ’04 Honda Accord. Most unreliable car I’ve owned, and I’ve owned a Megane.

    Really? I was looking at one of those for a future purchase.

    Whats gone wrong on it etc??

    Premier Icon ononeorange
    Subscriber

    Only had one Japanese engine (an Isuzu Diesel) – in that tiny, limited sample it was rubbish, it seized solid at about 60,000 miles. Never touched anything Japanese with 4 wheels otherwise.

    parkesie
    Member

    My french car is currently in surrender mode 🙂

    coffeeking
    Member

    THe problems largely seem to stem from the electronics and electrical Items these days, and it hits all cars fairly heavily but the Japanese are somewhat more accustomed to small electronics than most. I have always had a Peugeot as a daily driver and never yet has one owed me anything, cheap as chips to own and run, not the lap of luxury but never fails. But I’d be very wary of a newer one as they seem determined to cram them full of failure points that even BMW and the Japanese don’t get fully right.

    Oil in your fuel is a very bad idea in a modern engine.

    chewkw
    Member

    coffeeking – Member

    Oil in your fuel is a very bad idea in a modern engine.

    My Toyota Corolla is 2005, my mate’s Toyota Landcruiser and Hilux are both 2006 models and all our cars never miss a beat. Ok, the latter are diesel but he tried it on his Subaru Impreza for several years with no ill effect.

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