Ok, I've been working at a dealership in CO since the original 04's were shipped so I've watched them roll in and out. From what I've seen the 04's had the most serious problems as two of them have been replaced by 05's by General Motors as there was some issue with the electrical system throwing every code possible and not allowing the car to start. These seem to be the bad apples as none other than those two have even darkened our service door and remember these cars are under warantee so it would be a waste to drive elsewhere. As for the paint flaws, several things to consider as a US buyer. These cars are SHIPPED from australia, long hours in a boat's hold in high humidity isn't good for freshly curing paint. Then, once they hit our shores they are shipped BY TRAIN to a central railhead during which time they are pelted by by dirt at a high rate of speed. Every car shipped in the US has this problem and it is solved by a Clay Bar. All this being equal the major problem is the use of a chemical solvent called R4 to take excess adhesive off the cars and it really shouldn't be used although it is, or used very seldom as it tends to make our paints "soft".
Now, as for other car companies. TOYOTA the endless cry of the unimformed and hopelessly ricer recalled over 500,000 vehicles this year, more than any other car company for massive defects in no less than the air bag system which was solved by locking the air bags in a state of on allowing them to go off at any time in all full size trucks, defects so severe in the awd matrix/vibe that they discontinued the awd option for 2007 but didn't actually recall or warantee the problems *pontiac actually did a recall with the vibe*, and ther were many other recalls ranging from the not even released yet corrolla to the new "FJ" which by the way is forced to use premium octane only.
The only reason you aren't hearing about these companies is that, well at least in the Toy car companies case, they chose not to acknowledge the problem.
So if that helps clear up this little convo I'm glad. If the bashing of a really wonderful, albeit a bit stopgapish, car design then that just proves idiots do reproduce.