Cars are the biggest purchase, outside a house, most of us will ever make. As you have probably figured out by now if you have visited my blog more than once, I urge you to buy “American” not because I want to improve the stock price of GE or Ford, but because I believe that buying “American” provides employment for members of our extended American family. While not an economist, I do understand that there is a relationship between a firm’s stock price and its ability to provide jobs for Americans, but it seems over the last thirty years, a lot of “American” firms’ knee jerk method of improving their stock price is to offshore production overseas while laying off American workers. So my standard in determining whether a car is “American” is the nationality of the people manufacturing the cars, not the nationality of the people who own the car company. That being said, there are a load of “foreign” U.S. automakers employing members of our extended American family to make cars in this country. I will introduce you to all of them. The New York Times created a great interactive tool to help you figure out what “foreign cars” are made in this country. Today I am covering the “Big Two” Japanese American car manufacturers
I drive a Honda CRV. Now Honda is obviously a Japanese company. But my CRV was assembled in this country, at a plant located in East Liberty, Ohio. Honda assembles Hondas and Acuras, Honda’s luxury model, in four factories in this country. Honda also builds parts for its vehicles in this country. Overall, Honda employs 18,000 members of our extended American family making Honda vehicles and parts in this country. Honda has produced a study that attempts to document its economic impact on this country. My pick for currently coolest Honda is the Accord Crosstour; we almost bought one on our shopping trip on which we eventually bought our CRV
Toyota has been making cars in the U.S. since 1984. Toyota’s manufacturing headquarters is located in Hebron, Kentucky, and it operates with six major auto assembly plants in Huntsville, Alabama; Georgetown, Kentucky; Princeton, Indiana; San Antonio, Texas; Buffalo, West Virginia and Blue Springs, Mississippi. Toyota produces it Camry, Hybrid Camry, Avalon, Venza, Tundra, Tacoma, Sequoia, Sienna & Highlander models in the States. Obviously no member of the Toyota team ever visited Tacoma before giving one of its trucks that name. The Toyota I would buy? The Avalon.