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Study: Detroit lifts quality but Toyota still king

By AP

NEW YORK – A closely watched study of new vehicle quality says Ford, General Motors and Chrysler have improved, but they still lag behind foreign competitors like Toyota.

J.D. Power and Associates' study of initial vehicle quality shows 2009 model year vehicles sold by the Detroit Three improved by an average of 10% from 2008. That's compared with an industrywide improvement of 8%.

Toyota's Lexus brand topped the rankings released Monday, followed by Porsche, GM's Cadillac, Hyundai and Honda.

The results come at a tumultuous time for the industry. GM filed for bankruptcy protection on June 1, and Chrysler emerged from Chapter 11 about a week later.

People are now watching for evidence that U.S. carmakers can make products that match up against foreign companies' offerings.

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