If you want to buy an American-made car it could be a Japanese brand after the Jeep Cherokee. Cars.com (y released its 2019 American-Made Index (AMI), which ranks the top 15 new vehicles that contribute most to the U.S. economy — based on criteria ranging from manufacturing plants and parts sourcing to factory jobs. As trade tensions reach a fever pitch, buying American is top of mind for many consumers. But longstanding globalization in the auto industry has blurred the lines of what’s exactly American made.
Jeep Cherokee ranks as the most American-made vehicle of 2019. The Illinois-built SUV comes from Jeep, one of the most iconic American brands, yet it’s produced by Italian-American automaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Nine other vehicles came from Honda or Toyota, both Japan-based automakers. Honda has seven models that made the index, including two from its Acura division. Among the top 10 vehicles, the Honda Passport, Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon and Acura RDX are new to the American-Made Index or return after an absence.
Cars.com’s American-Made Index ranks cars based on five factors: assembly location, parts sourcing as determined by the American Automobile Labeling Act, U.S. factory employment relative to sales, engine sourcing and transmission sourcing. The company analyzed more than 100 U.S.-built vehicles to arrive at the top 15 most American models on the market
Cars.com’s survey revealed that half of all respondents are concerned about the possibility of tariffs on automotive imports. What’s at stake? If tariffs are passed, consumers could see increases in vehicle costs or manufacturers may be forced to eat those costs. Forty-one percent are unsure if the tariffs would make them more likely to consider domestic vehicles.
Eighty percent of respondents agree that buying American-made cars will create more jobs in the U.S.
? Forty-seven percent of American survey respondents replied that they think Michigan is the state that produces the most cars in the U.S., which is right on the money. The home state of the “Motor City” makes almost 18 percent of all new cars in the U.S. – the largest share of any state – followed closely by Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.²
Here is the ranking of the most American-made cars
U.S. Assembly Plant Location(s)
Bowling Green, Ky.
Acura MDX (excludes hybrid variants)
East Liberty, Ohio
East Liberty, Ohio
Toyota Avalon (excludes hybrid variants)
Claycomo, Mo., & Dearborn, Mich.
San Antonio, Texas
“Despite a lot of talk around new tariffs and the looming U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, few of the automakers in the top 15 indicated major manufacturing changes as a result,” said Kelsey Mays, senior editor at Cars.com. “Even if they had, manufacturing can’t change overnight. A single vehicle has tens of thousands of parts from third-party suppliers across the globe.”
The list above excludes cars like the Chevrolet Cruze and Volt, and the Ford Taurus and related Police Interceptor sedan — all discontinued as of publication without a U.S.-built successor.