When you’re buying a vehicle, do you think about the country of origin?
If you do, you’re likely to run into a lot of confusion. Even so-called ‘domestic’ cars and trucks can be assembled from parts sourced from all over the world.
But if buying American-made vehicles as much as possible is important to you, we’re going to help you cut through the clutter and confusion!
These cars have the highest amount of domestic content
This list reflects 2016 models, the most recent year for which the data has been crunched.
1. Buick Enclave
90% domestic content
2. Chevrolet Traverse
3. GMC Acadia
4. Ford F150
5. Chevrolet Corvette
7. Chevrolet Impala
8. Chevrolet Malibu E2 Gen
9. Chevrolet Malibu LTD
10. GMC Yukon, Yukon EXT
The funny thing is go a little further down the list and there are quite a few foreign nameplates that are made in America with a majority of U.S. parts.
These include the Honda Accord (81% domestic content), Honda Pilot (78.5%), Honda Odyssey (78.5%), Toyota Sienna (78.5%), Toyota Camry (78.5%), Acura RDX AWD (76%) and many more.
Another way to tell if a car is made in the USA
Here’s the window sticker (aka the Monroney label) that comes on all new vehicles:
There are three key pieces of info you can determine from this sticker, according to AutoTrader.com. Scan the highlighted box in the picture for this info:
In this particular example — a 2012 Chevrolet Volt — we see that 46% of the parts used in this vehicle are from the U.S. or Canada. Meanwhile, a majority (18%) of the other remaining parts were made in South Korea.
Final assembly point
This vehicle was built in Detroit.
Origin of major components
The engine and transmission (electric drive unit) are from the U.S.
Now, here’s another way to determine country of origin…
Still confused? Read the VIN to see if a vehicle is American-made!
The VIN (vehicle identification number) may look like a complicated string of numbers and letters to most people, but it can reveal some surprisingly useful info about a vehicle.
If the first character of the VIN is…
- 1, 4 or 5 – Then the vehicle was built in the United States
- 2 – Indicates a vehicle built in Canada
- 3 – Built in Mexico
- J – Built in Japan
- K – Built in South Korea
- S – Made in England
- W – Built in Germany
- Z – Made in Italy
These codes reflect the car’s final assembly point, even if a majority of the car’s production is done in other countries.
What if you can’t see the VIN on the dashboard clearly enough to read it? Try checking the alternate VIN sticker located inside the doorjamb on the driver’s side.
Look for dead giveaways like ‘Manufactured by Ford in the USA,’ ‘Built in Japan by Honda,’ etc.
Read more: The most and least reliable used car brands
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