What the Current Inventory of Consumer Reports’ Most Reliable Cars Tells Us

What vehicle are you interested in?

Last updated Jun 27, 2023

The current landscape of the car market is an intricate maze of fluctuating inventory levels and shifting price tags. Your guiding light through this labyrinth? Knowledge, of course. The knowledge that shines the brightest is the understanding of Market Day Supply (MDS). This illuminates the number of days it would take to sell all the inventory of a particular model, assuming no new cars enter the market and the current sales rate holds steady. A high MDS suggests a surplus that may give you, the buyer, some bargaining leverage. In contrast, a low MDS may indicate the sellers have the upper hand.

By exploring CarEdge Data, we’ve highlighted which new cars in 2023 have the best and worst reliability ratings, and what the inventory data tells us about them. We think you’ll agree that these insights are rather fascinating, and provide you with the knowledge to navigate the market like a pro.

The Most Reliable New Cars Today: Inventory and Negotiability in 2023

Toyota Corolla reliability

Using CarEdge Data, we analyzed nationwide supply and sales data for the ten most reliable cars in America, according to Consumer Reports. Here’s the data, and what it means for buyers.

CR Reliability RankingMakeModelStarting PriceMarket Day SupplyTotal For SaleTotal Sold (45 Days)
1ToyotaCorolla Hybrid*$24,145241188722588
2LexusGX$59,7755633582679
3MINIHardtop 2 Door and 4 Door$26,7959528091329
4ToyotaPrius$28,4452313142574
5MazdaMX-5 Miata$29,215851184631
6LincolnCorsair$40,0859633151550
7ToyotaCorolla*$22,795241188722588
8SubaruCrosstrek$26,29018238598
9BMW3 Series$44,7956726421778
10ToyotaPrius Prime$33,34543630664

Firstly, the reliability leaderboard has a strong Toyota presence. Models like the Toyota Corolla Hybrid, Toyota Prius, and Toyota Corolla claim high reliability ratings from Consumer Reports. These models fly off the dealer lots relatively quickly with a Market Day Supply of just 23-24 days, showing the high demand for reliable Toyota cars. Data was unavailable for the Corolla Hybrid, so we have included the latest numbers for the overall Corolla model. These popular, reliable cars will be less negotiable due to higher demand and quicker sell times. 

CarEdge’s Ray Shefska made it clear that despite great reliability and high demand, the days of being forced into paying a dealer markup are long gone. “No matter what the dealer tells you, never pay a markup or so-called ‘market adjustment’ for a new Toyota. The car market is very different in 2023 compared to the madness we saw during the chip shortage.

Next, the MINI Hardtop (2 Door and 4 Door) and Lincoln Corsair, despite their high reliability, have a much longer MDS (95 and 96, respectively), suggesting these reliable models may not be as in-demand. You’ll have more leverage negotiating these prices, especially with industry knowledge and familiarity with how to work a deal.

The Subaru Crosstrek, another model with a high reliability rating, stands out with the lowest MDS among the top 10 reliable cars, indicating the supply can barely keep up with demand. CarEdge Car Coach Justise says that Subaru has been the low-inventory king for many years, and that’s not changing any time soon.

Looking at the price tags, the most reliable vehicles come with a broad range of starting prices, from $22,795 (Toyota Corolla) to $59,775 (Lexus GX). This proves that reliability isn’t necessarily associated with a steep price.

Less Reliable, Less Demand? 

Chevrolet Silverado reliability

Car buyers aren’t racing to dealer lots for the models known for poor reliability. Unfortunately, American brands dominate the bottom ten.

MakeModelStarting PriceMarket Day SupplyTotal For SaleTotal Sold (45 Days)
JeepWrangler$36,990982672612330
Mercedez-BenzGLE$58,8506957003733
JeepGladiator$40,785289209453260
ChevroletSilverado 1500$36,300936832033219
GMCSierra 1500$37,1001213085611477
ChevroletBolt$27,4953530263908
FordExplorer$38,355932832313688
NissanSentra$21,145601338110048
LincolnAviator$54,73517843601103
HyundaiKona Electric$34,885n/an/an/a

The Chevrolet Silverado 1500, despite its less than stellar reliability, has a significant volume on sale but a relatively high MDS. The takeaway? It’s plentiful but not necessarily popular.

Two other models, the Jeep Gladiator and Lincoln Aviator, despite their lower reliability, have very high MDS (289 and 178, respectively). It appears these models may be the wallflowers of the dealership lots.

Meanwhile, the Nissan Sentra holds its own despite lower reliability, with a fairly low MDS (60). Its budget-friendly starting price may be a contributing factor.

Interestingly, the Hyundai Kona Electric does not have available market or sales data, shedding little light on its demand or supply status.

As we can see, both highly reliable and less reliable cars come with a wide range of starting prices. This indicates that the cost is not necessarily a reliable indicator of its reliability.

Conquer Car Buying with New Knowledge

Now, armed with these insights, you can navigate the market better. Whether you’re looking for a reliable titan like the Toyota Corolla, or even considering a less reliable model like the Chevrolet Silverado 1500, understanding the role of market days’ supply can give you the edge in your car-buying journey. Where there’s more inventory, greater negotiability is sure to follow.

Don’t forget to check out CarEdge Car Search, where auto industry insiders see behind-the-scenes data with every new and used car listing!

But we won’t leave you just yet. We want to arm you with more resources to make your journey smoother. One such tool is our free Car Buying Cheat Sheet. This popular resource can enhance your understanding of the market and help you zero in on the perfect car at the perfect price.

For a more detailed understanding, download your first CarEdge Report today. This report offers a comprehensive breakdown of key numbers in a simple and digestible format, setting you up for success at the negotiation table.

And if you’re looking for a personalized touch, CarEdge Coach is your ticket to savings. Our expert car buyers can offer personalized advice and help you negotiate thousands off your next car. 

Don’t navigate the car market alone; let CarEdge steer you in the right direction. You’ll be thankful you did.

2 Comments

  1. Tim Roark

    Why are all the Toyota model totals for total for sale and total sold in 45 days the same?

    Reply
  2. George Anderson

    Hey Ray,

    Mini on the most reliable list? I know that review did not come from you. Congratulations on all your success!

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

NEWSLETTER

The latest insights
right in your inbox

Get the latest car trends and money-saving strategies, once a week.

By signing up, you agree to CarEdge's Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.

Share This