It seems this calendar year will improve in terms of supply chain challenges for many auto manufacturers, with a general consensus that new chip sources will alleviate some of last year’s snarls. Still, one forward-looking group of analysts have peered into a crystal ball and determined all hands might not be out of the woods quite yet.
While they’re typically a little older than the first time car buyers that usually approach me for advice, there is a subset of individuals that tell me they want to ensure their vehicle is American Made™ and supports the hard working men from country they love. Unfortunately, this usually occurs at the tail of our conversation. We’ve got a price in mind, narrowed down the segment, and are now circling a handful of models they might actually be happy owning. Then they hit me with the regional curveball.
It’s not easy deciding what qualifies as truly American. Sure, I could just rattle off a list of vehicles built inside the United States — and am sometimes forced to — but that doesn’t take into account the multitude of components comprising each model. Such a task would be a monumental undertaking and these discussions usually take place at a drinking establishment, where I’m inclined to get drunk distracted.
Fortunately, Cars.com does an annual rundown of the “most-American” vehicles currently in production with its American-Made Index (AMI) — leaving few stones unturned in its year-long quest for answers.
While you still hear people throw around the slogan “American Made” quite a bit when it comes to automobiles, the phrase has grown increasingly meaningless. Even if something is built within the states, parts for it will stream in from across the globe. Other times something may not even be built within the country. For example, the iconically American Dodge Challenger is assembled in Brampton, Ontario and has its 5.7-liter Hemi engines shipped in from Mexico. That’s not a slight to the vehicle, but you just know people have slapped a “Buy American” bumper sticker onto more than a couple of them.
However there are models that still have the majority of their bolts tightened within the United States and that means something to some shoppers. If you’re one of those, here are most American cars you can buy in 2018.
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- IanGTCS Someone else's project is a default no go for me. In saying that it is a good looking car and has been mentioned it shouldn't be the most difficult project to complete. If the auction goes low enough I can see the value for someone in this one.
- ToolGuy "it’s a troubling reversal from the automaker"• Trouble for whom? Doesn't trouble me.
- Arthur Dailey Due to the ease of parts and the comparative lack of complexity, this might be an excellent 'project' to provide a student/young adult with a vehicle that stands out in the parking lot. Rather than adding 'go fast' options put in basic and robust mechanical components and it might be a decent 'runner'?
- Theflyersfan Building on Art and MaintenanceCosts - Looking at the three Nissan dealers in my area:Jeff Wyler (one of the 800 pound gorillas of car dealer families in this part of the Midwest - all over Cincinnati, Columbus and Louisville):2024 Z NISMO: $84,075 ($15,000 "upfits")2024 Z Performance: $52,562 ($1,800 discount)2024 Z Sport: $44,095 (in transit, no discount or "upfit" listed)Coyle: No Zs availableCollins:2024 Z Performance: $65,720 ("upfit" isn't listed, but it's looking to be around $10K-$13K)Three dealers, three on the lot, one in transit, and the good one has a laughable adjustment. There is no way a Z, even a NISMO, is worth $84,000 before taxes and fees. I guess if you're in the Kentuckiana area, and have a need for a Z, get the Performance model and the small discount. But this is just one metro area of close to a million people with three dealers with little inventory with Zs getting marked up. And I'm sure everyone reading this can check their hometown Nissan dealers and see the same thing.
- Analoggrotto One parked beside me early this year