CITROEN 6th 2005 position 24th Claims per 100 vehicles 28.3 Average age 4.5 years Average mileage 47,218 Average repair cost £220 Average repair time 2.3 hours
Problem areas Citroens are prone to axle and suspension problems - 34% of all Citroens, including 50% of Xantias, suffered in this area. Electrical bugs also plagued 23% of the cars, and the C5 came off worst, with 45% of cars afflicted.
Heating and cooling system complaints, along with brake issues and engine problems, made up the majority of other gripes.
Overall, the newest Citroen in our survey, the C5, was the least reliable; the most reliable, the Xsara, suffered more than most with brake problems. The average Citroen labour rate was just lower than the overall average.
Best model Xsara ('97-'05) Worst model C5 ('01-)
Verdict **** A big improvement for Citroen, but the fact that the newest model in our survey, the C5, is the worst performer doesn't bode well.
FIAT 20th 2005 position 18th Claims per 100 vehicles 37.4 Average age 5.1 years Average mileage 47,098 Average repair cost £361 Average repair time 2.6 hours
Problem areas About a quarter of the Fiats in our survey suffered from axle and suspension problems, with the Brava and the Coupe the worst affected.
Engine issues accounted for 20% of all claims, although again the Coupe suffered most - 35% of them required attention under the bonnet.
The transmission, electrics and cooling system were responsible for the rest of the problems. Fiat's hourly labour rate is low compared with some rivals', but the cars were among the oldest in our survey, and took over 2.5 hours to fix when they did break down.
Best model Fiat Brava ('96-'02) Worst model Fiat Multipla ('99-'04)
Verdict ** Overall, a very average performance. The Multipla is one of the least reliable cars in the whole survey.
FORD 10th 2005 position 20th Claims per 100 vehicles 30.3 Average age 4.8 years Average mileage 49,438 Average repair cost £241 Average repair time 2.4 hours
Problem areas The Ka is the most reliable Ford in our survey but, overall, 73% of the company's cars suffered from suspension and axle problems.
The only Ford that didn't have axle and suspension issues as its main fault was the Galaxy ('00-'06), which was more likely to suffer electrical and heating and cooling issues.
Overall, Ford owners were also faced with brake and electrical complaints and, to a lesser extent, cooling system woes. The average labour rate of £90 per hour is surprisingly high compared with Ford's rivals, as is the average cost of repair. This was mainly due to the average repair cost on the Galaxy, which is just over £430.
Best model Ford Ka ('96-) Worst modelFord Galaxy ('95-'00)
Verdict *** Ford has jumped into the top half of the table, and its result would have been even better were it not for less reliable models such as the Galaxy dragging down the overall result.