From the Detroit Free Press:
They build unreliable junk.
The creaky, leaky vehicles of the 1980s and '90s are long gone. Consumer Reports recently found that "Ford's reliability is now on par with good Japanese automakers." The independent J.D. Power Initial Quality Study scored Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Ford, GMC, Mercury, Pontiac and Lincoln brands' overall quality as high or higher than that of Acura, Audi, BMW, Honda, Nissan, Scion, Volkswagen and Volvo.
Power rated the Chevrolet Malibu the highest-quality midsize sedan. Both the Malibu and Ford Fusion scored better than the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry.
The story goes on to list five other common misconceptions about the auto industry.
As I've written before, there are still many ways in which the Detroit automakers lag behind foreign competition. But the industry is certainly doing better than most people seem to think. And that's worth remembering as we debate whether, and how, to offer the companies loans to get through the present economic crisis.