Germany’s ADAC, which is the largest automobile club in Europe, published the results of its latest reliability study, which analyzes vehicle breakdowns and their causes in 2022, and the Tesla Model 3 ranked at the top of the chart.
This is the first time electric vehicles have been included in the index and four EVs made the cut: Tesla Model 3, BMW i3, Renault Zoe, and Volkswagen ID.3. To be included in ADAC’s reliability report, a vehicle must be sold in at least 7,000 units in the first two years of its market launch. Additionally, all breakdowns in the course of 2022 that affected vehicles aged between three to ten years are included.
For the Tesla Model 3, there were only 1.1 breakdowns reported per 1,000 vehicles for the 2020 model year, and just 0.9 breakdowns per 1,000 units made in 2019, which are very good results overall. The internal combustion-engined 2020 Skoda Octavia, for example, got a rating of 4, so almost four times as many breakdowns were reported for this particular model.
However, the BMW i3 scored even better than the Model 3, with just 0.2 breakdowns per 1,000 vehicles for the 2020 model year and 0.8 for the previous model year. The Volkswagen ID.3 also got a score of 0.2 for units made in 2020.
The Renault Zoe fared the worst among all the EVs in the reliability report, with a score of 3.3 for the 2020 model year.
In the same mid-size class as the Tesla Model 3, only a handful of ICE vehicles managed to get better scores for units made in 2020, with the ADAC reporting 0.8 breakdowns per 1,000 vehicles for the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and 1 breakdown per 1,000 units for the Audi A4.
As for the causes of the breakdowns, the German club lists the 12-volt battery as the number one culprit, with the energy source often being discharged. 42.2 percent of the breakdowns that occurred in 2022 were attributed to the low-voltage battery in one way or another.
The ADAC notes that causes such as an empty fuel tank, empty battery, and tire defects are not taken into account in the reliability index.
The ADAC, which stands for Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil-Club (General German Automobile Club) was established in 1903 and is dedicated to road traffic, road safety, road safety education, tourism, and the protection of road users’ rights. The primary service offered to its over 20 million members is roadside assistance, followed by air rescue and medical services, for which it employs over 55 air ambulance helicopters across Germany.