“The J.D. Power & Associates Initial Quality Study released on Wednesday shows that automakers continue to make gains in vehicle quality, but the black art of telematics design poses a growing liability, especially for Ford,” Cheryl Jensen reports for The New York Times. “Problems with its MyFord and MyLincoln Touch infotainment systems continued to bedevil the company, with other automakers hurt to a lesser degree.”

“Ford dropped from fifth place in 2010 to 23rd in 2011, largely on complaints from owners who found the telematics to be unintuitive and complex. This year, Ford fell to 27th. Lincoln, which was ranked eighth in 2010 and 17th in 2011, fell to 18th,” Jensen reports. “‘It’s not that the problem is getting worse, it’s becoming more prevalent because they are introducing more vehicles with MyFord Touch,’ David Sargent, vice president of global automotive research at J.D. Power, said in an interview. ‘So the ranking could be more impacted this year because more vehicles have it.'”

“Vehicle owners were asked whether they experienced any of 228 possible problems, which included mechanical defects and malfunctions, as well as design issues like the ease of use of controls. Other categories included exterior design, engine/transmission and audio/entertainment/navigation design. The study’s authors graded automakers on the number of problems per 100 vehicles,” Jensen reports. “Over all, Lexus was the top-rated brand for the second consecutive year, with 73 problems per 100 vehicles. The surprise this year was Jaguar, which rocketed from 20th position in 2011 into a tie for 2nd place with Porsche, as owners reported 75 problems per 100 vehicles. Rounding out the top five were Cadillac with 80 problems and Honda with 83. BMW, meanwhile, was back in the top 10 for the first time since 2005. Mr. Sargent added that BMW’s good fortunes were attributable to improvements across the vehicle range.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As if we needed it, this article is yet more proof that The New York Times should be printing on toilet paper, but even that would be too good; The New York Times isn’t worth a crap.

Nowhere in the entire piece – not once – was the name “Microsoft” mentioned even though (and this would seem to be more than a bit of pertinent information) Microsoft developed “MyFord Touch” and “MyLincoln Touch.” Unbelievable. “The paper of record.” What a load of horseshit that is.

NYT, seriously, how much did Microsoft pay you and/or how incompetent can you possibly be?

From Wikipedia: “MyFord Touch (branded as MyLincoln Touch on Ford’s Lincoln brand products) is an in-car communications and entertainment system developed by the Ford Motor Company and Microsoft. The technology comes factory installed with Ford product offerings and is based on the Microsoft Auto 4.0 software platform. It is regarded as the next-generation of Ford Sync.”

Microsoft’s Midas touch strikes again. And the absence of Ford on the list of Apple’s Siri Eye Free vehicle maker partners means that Ford’s decision-making process is still hopelessly FUBAR.

Memo to Ford: If you still haven’t figured it out, Microsoft sucks. Always have and always will. Wake TF up already. Microsoft’s crap is costing you vehicle sales. That is all.

Of course, we predicted this ongoing fiasco rather concisely in a headline long ago: When crap collides: Ford and Microsoft team up for in-vehicle operating system – December 29, 2006

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “WGary” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Nine auto makers partner with Apple for ‘Eyes Free’ Siri integration – June 12, 2012
Stung by plummeting quality ratings, Ford to upgrade glitch-prone Microsoft-designed ‘MyFord Touch’ systems – November 7, 2011
Microsoft’s confusing, buggy Sync sinks Ford’s J.D. Power quality ratings – June 23, 2011
When crap collides: Ford and Microsoft team up for in-vehicle operating system – December 29, 2006