Fracture strength and accelerated fatigue reliability of two zirconia abutment systems were tested. Thirty-six implants with a Morse taper (MT; n = 18) or cone (C; n = 18) design were restored with metallic crowns. Loads were applied as single load to failure (SLF) or mouth-motion cycles using a step-stress accelerated life testing (SALT) method. SLF mean values were 690 ± 430 N and 209 ± 25 for MT and C groups, respectively. In terms of the SALT results, 8 specimens survived (50,000 cycles) and 7 failed (maximum load 400 N) in the MT group; whereas for the C group all abutments failed before the maximum number of cycles. Failure mode was fracture of the Y-TZP abutments for both groups. Higher reliability for a mission of 50,000 cycles at 175 N for MT versus C designs was determined, and significant differences in fracture modes were observed.
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