Tesla is making progress on fixing a big problem with the Model 3 and Model S that put it at odds with Consumer Reports

Hollis Johnson/Business InsiderA Tesla Model 3.

Consumer Reports now recommends Tesla’s Model 3 and Model S sedans because the vehicles have become more reliable, the consumer-advocacy organisation said on Thursday.

Tesla moved up in the organisation’s ranking of the most reliable auto brands, from 27th out of 28 in the last ranking to 23rd out of 30 in the current one. Consumer Reports measures reliability by analysing survey responses from vehicle owners who are asked to list the problems their vehicle has had in the past year and whether they were serious.

Consumer Reports does not recommend the electric-car maker’s Model X SUV, which is still among the least reliable vehicles included in its survey.

Tesla’s rise in the ranking suggests the company’s production quality, which has long been an issue, is improving. A Bloomberg survey of Model 3 owners pointed to a similar conclusion, as defects reported by new owners fell 44% between the third quarter of last year and the third quarter of this year, with reported issues reaching their lowest point in the 21-month period analysed by Bloomberg in September.

“The Tesla Model 3 struggled last year as the company made frequent design changes and ramped up production to meet demand,” Jake Fisher, the senior director of auto testing at Consumer Reports, said in a press release. “But as the production stabilised, we have seen improvements to the reliability of the Model 3 and S that now allow us to recommend both models.”

Fisher added that he expects the reliability of Tesla’s vehicles to change in the future given the company’s history of quality issues.

Lexus earned the top spot in Consumer Reports’ reliability ranking, followed by Mazda and Toyota.

Are you a current or former Tesla employee? Do you have an opinion about what it’s like to work there? Contact this reporter at [email protected]. You can ask for more secure methods of communication, like Signal or ProtonMail, by email or Twitter direct message.

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