Most auto consumers know it takes more than a badge from Detroit to call a car “American.” Even before Italian automaker Fiat bought the Chrysler Group, GM was importing cars with Chevrolet emblems from factories in Korea and Toyota was building its flagship Camry sedan in Kentucky. They call it globalization, and it can be more than a little complicated.
In fact, it takes a lot of research to determine how much U.S. content ends up in a car these days. Fortunately, the team at American University’s Kogod School of Business handles the job with the annual Made in America Auto Index. Counting the source of parts (50%), engine and transmission production (21%), factory and storage (17%), site of corporate headquarters (6%), and research facilities (6%), Professor Frank DuBois and staff come up with a score based on a total of 100 points.
As per usual, more than one third of the vehicles found to be the most American come from foreign brands. We hope — as with Consumer Reports reliability reports and safety ratings — these rankings help if you are buying a new car. Here are the 30 most American-made cars of 2017.
30. Honda Civic
Total domestic content: 76%
Honda opened its Greensburg (Ind.) plant in 2008, and the site only produces the Civic and CR-V for the American market. Considering those two models consistently rank among the top 10 in U.S. sales, they keep the staff busy. On the Made in America index, Civic EX-L four-door sedans scored 76 out of 100, which was the best of any compact car on the U.S. market.