JD Power survey 2010 - Superminis: 17 - 23

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  • 17,200 motorists polled
  • 104 models reviewed
  • 27 manufacturers tested
17: Renault Clio

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 76.7%
Overall 89th
Like the Corsa, the Clio has improved its score this year – but only very slightly, so it's still languishing at the wrong end of the results table.

A string of merely average scores consigns it to such a lowly position, rather than any particular major failings. Owners reported relatively few problems with the exterior of the car.

However, that wasn't enough to compensate for the large number of criticisms, which included the high costs of servicing, the below-average stereo and the disappointing ventilation system. Owners also picked out the cabin as being below par.

18: Peugeot 207

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 76.2%
Overall 92nd
Owners' thorough dissatisfaction with the quality of Peugeot's dealers and their work was the main reason behind the 207's low position here. They also thought the car cost too much to insure and service. Otherwise, the 207 put in a decent showing – and one that was more consistent with its higher finish in the top half of the class last year.

Owners rated its appeal as average, saying a slight lack of space and comfort was their only real disappointment with the cabin. Likewise, there were no great problems with the car's ride, handling or refinement – but no great praise for them, either.


19: Kia Rio

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 75.9%
Overall 95th
There's a huge difference in the performance of Kia's models this year. While the Cee'd sits proudly in the top 10 overall, the Rio languishes in the bottom 10. It's not hard to see why. The Rio's troubles start with the dealers, and owners criticise every aspect of their service, from the staff to the quality of their work and the facilities. Which means it's hardly surprising to hear that owners also said the servicing was too costly.

To cap it all, they also were far from complimentary about the car's looks and the comfort of its seats, and also criticised problems with the interior.

20: Suzuki Swift

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 75.6%
Overall 96th=
For the second year running, the Swift is the lowest-placed Japanese supermini and now the lowest-placed Japanese car overall. Among the many issues cited were problems with the boot, noisy brakes, a poor radio and trouble with the car misting up.

Owners said the materials inside marked easily, while starting problems were also reported along with clutch and manual gearbox issues.

Owners said the interior wasn't quiet, comfortable or well-ventilated enough, while the boot was too small and difficult to load. The only real consolation was that they thought the car looked okay.

21: Vauxhall Meriva

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 75.1%
Overall 100th
We described the Meriva as a 'loser' last year, and the news hasn't got any better this time. Although its overall rating has dropped only slightly, it's enough to push the Meriva into the bottom 10 overall. The irony is that in some places it scores very well. Owners love the spacious, practical cabin and boot, for instance, while the build quality also comes in for much praise.

The trouble is, there are too many areas where it's distinctly below average. For a start, the Meriva costs too much to insure and fuel, say owners, while they also weren't impressed with the staff at their dealer or the ineffective heating and ventilation system.

22: Fiat Grande Punto

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 74.6%
Overall 101st
There's still huge room for improvement in Fiat's supermini. In almost all of our categories, the Grande Punto rated as below average. It was too expensive to service, said owners, while the quality of the dealerships, their staff and their work also left a lot to be desired.

Sadly, given the number of problems reported – water leaks, the side doors and noisy fans – dealerships are probably where Punto owners spent more time than they would have wished.

At least they were more positive about how the car looked, but they were disappointed with the ventilation system and thought the car should have had better performance.





23: Peugeot 206

Vehicle owner satisfaction score 74.1%
Overall 103rd
It's only the Ford Ka that can spare the 206's blushes. Otherwise, the Peugeot would have been the last car in the whole survey, as well as the worst supermini. In some respects, the car has the excuse of being an old design.

We can perhaps forgive the below-par ratings for space, practicality and comfort, but there can be no such excuse for the poor performance by the dealers (whom owners criticised for every aspect of their service) or the high running costs.

Consider, too, the reports of inadequate ventilation and difficulties adjusting the seats, and this remains a car best avoided.

Supermini league table
Click on the image for a larger view.


Mario’s Toyota Yaris
Name Mario Chavez Age 34 Lives Weybridge, Surrey Job IT Engineer
Model 1.4 TR 5dr Mileage with car 19,000


‘I use my Yaris for work and have done around 19,000 miles around London and Kent in a year. It’s very quiet, and the sixth gear means it’s very good for economy on the motorway. My wife and I have also travelled to Cornwall and Edinburgh in it, and it’s comfortable. However, I was disappointed that, because this was an early TR model, it didn’t get alloy wheels.’

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