“AMERICAN-MADE” AIN’T WHAT IT USED TO BE …
Automotive website Cars.com has released its annual list of the Top Ten “American made” cars … but a quick peek under the hood reveals troubling trends for the “Made in the U.S.A.” movement.
This year, only thirteen models manufactured in American featured domestic-parts content greater than 75 percent – the threshold for inclusion on this list. Four years ago? Thirty models met that criteria.
“It’s a clear trend, and it comes despite increased domestic car production,” Yahoo! News noted.
Indeed … pretty soon Cars.com is going to have to go with a Top Five “American made” list (or adjust its criteria).
Oh, it’s also worth pointing out that seven of the ten top “American made” cars this year were Hondas or Toyotas.
“In today’s global economy, there’s no easy way to determine just how American a car is,” the editors at Cars.com said. “Many cars built in the U.S., for example, are assembled using parts that come from elsewhere. Some cars assembled in the U.S. from largely American-made parts don’t sell well, meaning fewer Americans are employed to build them.”
Want the numbers? This year ninety American-made models have an average domestic parts content of 57.1 percent. In 2013, there were 93 models with 57.7 percent American-made parts. The year before? Eighty-six models were 60.5 percent “American made.”
It’s been tough sledding for the auto industry of late. After a government subsidized “recovery,” the specter of rising interest rates has many analysts eyeing decreased demand in the coming years.
Oh … and let’s not forget the backed up inventory.