The Ram 1500 is assembled in Sterling Heights, Michigan. But only 58% of its components are manufactured in the United States and Canada. No truck is fully made in the USA: here’s how the Ram 1500 stacks up to the competition.
How do you measure American-made?
It can be confusing to decide just how “American-made” a vehicle is. That’s why the government passed the American Automobile Labeling Act. On every new vehicle’s window sticker, its manufacturer must print where it was assembled and what percent of its components came from Canada and the US.
That settles it, right? Not so fast. What if the auto industry builds one major component such as the engine or transmission elsewhere? What if it does research and development elsewhere?
When Cars.com set about ranking the most American-made vehicles, the publication focused on how many jobs each one created. It took into account the assembly location and the percent of components manufactured in the US/Canada. Then it gave additional weight to the motor and the transmission. Finally, it looked at the size of the company versus how many employees are in manufacturing in the US.
When Cars.com reexamined the Ram 1500, the Stellantis truck lost out to several major competitors.
The most American-made pickup trucks?
Here’s how all the available half-ton and midsize pickup trucks fall in the Cars.com American-Made Index. Note, heavy-duty pickup trucks and fleet vehicles are exempt from the American Automobile Labeling Act.
- Honda Ridgeline
- Toyota Tundra
- Chevrolet Colorado
- GMC Canyon
- Ford Ranger
- Ford F-150
- Jeep Gladiator
- Ram 1500
- Ford F-150 Hybrid
- Nissan Titan
- Nissan Frontier
- Chevrolet Silverado 1500
- GMC Sierra 1500
- Toyota Tacoma
That’s not a typo: a greater percentage of the components of the Honda Ridgeline (70%) and Toyota Tundra (65%) are manufactured in the US/Canada than any other truck! Honda assembles the Ridgeline in Lincoln, Alabama. Toyota assembles its Tundra in San Antonio, Texas. Toyota used to assemble all its Tacomas there as well, but recently moved some of this work to Mexico.
Not everyone agrees with the Cars.com rankings. The experts over at the Kogod School of Business maintain their own index. The Kogod list focuses less on where the jobs land and more on where the money from your purchase goes.
Because Toyota and Honda are headquartered abroad, Kogod dings each for research and development (3%) and for final profit (6%). For this reason the Tundra falls to vehicle #14 and the Ridgeline to #9. The Ford F-150, however, climbs to #8. According to the Kogod list the 2022 Ram 1500 ties for #30 on its ranking of the most American-made vehicles.
Even in the Kogod ranking, the 2022 Ram 1500 falls below most full-size trucks. Only the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra optioned with the turbodiesel come in lower, at spot #34.
What about the Ram 1500 Classic?
In 2022, you can still buy three trim levels of the old fourth-generation Ram 1500. These trucks are essentially 2018 technology and badged as the Ram 1500 Classic. Some of the 2022 Ram 1500 Classic trucks are assembled in Warren, Michigan while others are assembled in Saltillo, Mexico.
This throwback of a truck comes in dead last in the Cars.com American-made truck index. In the all-vehicle index, the only one less American-made than the Ram 1500 Classic is the Honda Civic.
But wait one minute: The Ram 1500 Classic was developed in Detroit, by a company headquartered in Detroit. Many are assembled in Michigan out of 63% US/Canada parts. How can it score that poorly?
Luckily the Kogod School of Business is a bit more precise in its measurements. According to the folks at Kogod, the Ram 1500 Classic actually scores higher than the regular Ram 1500. What’s more, the Ram 1500 Classic equipped with a 5.7L HEMI V8 only scores a rank of #26. But the Ram 1500 Classic with the 3.6L base V6 actually achieves a score of #10.
Is the 2022 Ram 1500 actually American-made?
You can say with confidence that your 2022 Ram 1500 is assembled in Michigan. You also know that more than half of its components are built in either the US or Canada.
That said, the truck’s research money and final profits go to a global conglomerate (Stellantis). Keeping your money local is a lot more complicated than choosing a familiar badge.