The problem is, we live in an era of international corporations, meaning that parts and production for a single vehicle can be spread around the globe. As a result, it can be very hard to say what is -- or isn't -- an American car.
Luckily for sticklers, folks at Washington University's Kogod School of Business have developed at least one system for rating cars' "American-ness".
The team looked at every major 2014 model-year vehicle manufactured for the U.S. and assigned scores as follows:
- Profit Margin, 6%: 6 if U.S. company; 0 if foreign
- Labor, 6%: 6 if assembled in U.S.; 0 if foreign
- Research & Development, 6%: 6 if U.S. company; 3 if foreign and assembled in U.S.; 1 if foreign and imported
- Inventory, Capital, & Other Expenses, 11%: 11 if assembled in U.S.; 0 if assembled outside of U.S.
- Engine, 14%: 14 if U.S. produced; 0 if not
- Transmission, 7%: 7 if U.S. produced; 0 if not
- Body, Interior, Chassis, Electrical & Other, 50%: 2014 AALA% divided by 2*
When all the results had been tallied, the 2014 Ford F-150 and 2014 Chevrolet Corvette took top honors, with both receiving scores of 87.5. As far as automakers go, though, GM dominated the top ten, with vehicles from Buick, Cadillac, and GMC also scoring very high. Perhaps not surprisingly, Chrysler and Ford were the only other car companies with top-ten vehicles. (Note: that could change next year.)
The other end of the chart was almost exclusively the province of Asian automakers, particularly Toyota. However, the lowest rank of all -- with just one point -- was split by a diverse array of companies including Aston Martin, Ferrari, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Lotus, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Toyota, and Volkswagen.
Curious to see how your car scored? Check the full list by clicking here.
*AALA represents data from the American Automobile Labeling Act.