F-150 Just Misses Top Spot in Cars.com's American-Made Index

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Just missing the top spot in Cars.com's annual American Made Index, the Ford F-150 (built in both Dearborn, Mich., and Claycomo, Mo.) finished just behind the four-time-winning Toyota Camry. 

To qualify for the list, a vehicle must have at least 75 percent domestic parts content and be assembled in the United States. The AMI uses two separate pieces of information to determine parts content, with total sales used as a weighting factor — the first is the percentage of domestic parts by cost on each car (and by congressional mandate, "domestic" includes parts from Canada as well, reflecting the long-standing parts industry along our shared border); the other requirement lists the vehicle's final assembly point.

As noted, the more sales, the higher a particular qualifier can move up the rankings. Why do they do this? Cars.com says the more units of a certain car that are sold, the more suppliers and autoworkers are employed to build, sell and service that car. In the end, the idea is that any car that has a vast majority of domestic parts, assembled by hands in the U.S. and embraced by hundreds of thousands of American consumers is an American-made product, regardless of the brand name.

According to the story, the F-150 missed the top spot by just two days of sales. The F-150 was once a common AMI leader, topping the index from 2006 to 2008, but lower domestic parts content had dropped the best-selling pickup off the list for several years. With its domestic parts content back to 75 percent — up from 60 percent in 2011 — the F-150 returns to the AMI for 2012. Additionally, Cars.com calculates that the F-Series is the best-selling vehicle exclusively built in the U.S. 

The only other pickup truck making the list, at No. 7 for 2012, is the Toyota Tundra, which is built in San Antonio. (It finished ninth last year.) To find out exactly where certain vehicles are made and how the number of auto plants in the U.S. have migrated throughout the country over the last30 years, click here


@BlueOvalEmpire--I am sympathetic to your viewpoint. If you like the F-150 and it is still mostly American made then you should buy it. But you might want to hold onto one of your F-150s because before long just like everything it will become less American. I am not trying to be ugly but I like to deal in reality. Ford is an American icon and the story of Henry Ford and the first assembly line mass produced cars is a great success story. The only thing is now you have multinational corporations with professional management who look at squeezing as much profit out of a product as possible and reducing costs as much as they can get by with. I don't know how old you are but at age 60 I remember the glory days of America from the late 50s thru the 60s. I knew every brand of American car and truck and every year because they were all different. A 1958 Chevy and 1959 were totally different. Same with Fords and Chryslers. We were Number 1 as a country and we were as to quote Ronald Reagan "That shining beacon on the hill." My proudest moment as an American was at age 17 watching the first Moon landing in 1969. That was a proud moment for all.

The future was ours and the promise of a brighter future looked endless. Unfortunately several recessions, oil embargos, Middle East entanglements, and an onslaught of inexpensive Asian products (first Japanese, then Korean, and now Chinese and Vietnamese). I have been through several layoffs and for the past 24 years I have worked for the Government which I swore I would never work for. Never say never. It is too easy to lay all the blame on the Government and GM. This is not to say they are guiltless but that they are not the only contributors to our economic demise. I don't think GM is going away just that it will become more Chinese. Ford also is rapidly building in China because they too want a large slice of the Chinese and Asian pie. I am not going to bash Ford for this, they are just doing what everyone else is doing. I hope for your children and future generations as well as all Americans that they are able to maintain a decent standard of living. If GM, Ford, or Chrysler totally disappeared I would survive but I think that we as a nation would be poorer for it. I do think they will all do quite well but they will become less American.

It is also too easy to blame Obama or some might blame "W". These changes have been going on a lot longer than them. These changes have been going on over the past 40 years. The changing fuel standards for fullsize trucks will make all the companies look at cost cutting further because of the added cost of compliance. The size of the trucks will get a little bit smaller (not too small or they would lose customers) and more parts and platforms will be shared with overseas products. The manufacturers will do whatever it takes to adapt to all of these changes and remain profitable.

The entire Ram brand was outsold by, amongst others, the Chevy Malibu and Ford Escape in June. In your words, "Reed it and weep!"

"Ram sales were up 11 percent to 25,110"
"GM was led by sales of the Chevrolet Malibu, which rose 32 percent to 31,402"
"Ford said Tuesday it sold 28,500 Escapes in June"

From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120703/AUTO01/207030371#ixzz1zZVeTIDS

@Mopar Muscle - Mexico is no longer considered North American especially when it comes to the NA economic environment. We've been trying to distance ourselves for decades.

North American marketing statistics don't include Mexico, although they're partly to blame for that. Even the UN considers Mexico part of central America and that's just silly. There's just 2 American continents, North and South. The rest is fiction.

When it comes to cheap labor forces, yeah Mexico is our beloved North American amigos. Suddenly they're like our brothers.

@Jeff S - it is a very complex topic and there are other factors besides offshoring middleclass jobs and greed. Technology reduces the need for large workforces. Why worry about hung-over employees when a robot can do the job. The lunar landing you mentioned (I was 7 at the time) is an interesting benchmark. Our smartphones have more computer power than the ones used for that mission. Our population is aging. Babyboomers are in that 50 - 65 year old range and will be leaving the workforce. Our disposable incomes will leave with us. Developed countries also have lower birth rates. That means there are less people to buy products. Population numbers of most developed countries would shrink if not for immigration. USA's time in the sun as the economic powerhouse has passed due to all of these reasons. China has a burgeoning middle class. Their middle class is bigger than the population of USA. They want what we have and will pay for it. As they become more modern they will want all of the social, economic, and human rights that we enjoy. India is another developing powerhouse. Countries moving out of poverty and towards affluence. That is where the new growth and power will be.Those of us in North America need to position ourselves to take advantage of that growth. Traditional jobs aren't going to cut it in the new emerging world. Closing off one's borders to foreign trade would make it worse. Look south to Cuba for an example of a closed society. Can we close down all of the Wallmarts and Mega stores and go back to mom and pop corner stores and cars and trucks that had soul in every nut and bolt? Not likely and fixating on the past will make us miss what is in the present and doom one's future.

@Lou-Well said I could not have said it better. We do not live in a vacuum. I wish for your children and Blue Oval's childrenl a better future but I hope they prepare for this new World. You cannot stay in the past too long or you will get stuck. My life long lesson (which I am still striving to suceed at) is summed up in a prayer "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know these difference." I will try to support local businesses when I can and buy NA made products but I am not going to buy something that does not meet my needs. I am not going to penalize Toyota because they are Japanese based but if I buy one of their products I am helping the NA worker which in turn is helping all of us.

Could not have said it better, still there are a lot of opportunities in this changing environment. I being one of the BabyBoomers, who now finds my generation looking at another form of Automotive subtype : RV's

@Robert Ryan-Glad I am not one of the only Baby Boomers on this site. Yes there are a lot of opportunities. The glass is half full. Have a good day!

@Lou, Rob & Jeff,
I'm also a baby boomer.

I agree with Lou and Jeff. Even in Australia restructuring is needed at the moment because we have become uncompetitive. The same is probably true in Canada and all OECD economies. We like the Canadian are lucky because we have a relatively small population with tremendous resources we can dig up and sell. But manufacturing is out of the question for us unless we adapt and become "creative" in our ways.

I agree that locking up an economy is totally wrong. I hope the US can unlock itself for it own survival or it will go the way of other insular societies.

@Big Al from Oz - Ontario is the province that has traditionally been Canada's economic powerhouse due to its manufacturing sector. They have been hit really hard due to depressed world markets. They had the crap kicked out of them with the auto industry collapse as well. The resource rich West (British Columbia, Alberta, Sasketchewan, Manitoba) have faired much better. The new economic powerhouse is Alberta due to its oil reserves. Usually BC takes a hit when the USA housing market drops but this time it hasn't been so bad as we sell more lumber to China and the orient than the USA.

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