A new study gives high marks to more than two dozen vehicle brands for improving their quality in 2010 - including troubled Toyota - but said that many of these names suffer from lousy consumer perceptions.
"Producing vehicles with world-class quality is just part of the battle for automakers," said David Sargent, vice president of automotive research at J.D. Power and Associates, in a press release. "Convincing consumers to believe in their quality is equally as important."
He said that it takes "considerable time to positively change consumer perceptions of quality of reliability."
The study said Toyota - which has come under fire in recent months for problems with sudden acceleration, inspiring a massive recall - "continues to perform well in long-term dependability" and won more segment awards than any other model in 2010.
Toyota owners reported relatively few problems, the study said, with 128 problems per 100 vehicles, compared to the industry average of 155. The results are based on responses from more than 52,000 owners of 2007 vehicles during the time between October and December of 2009.