It’s that time of year again. The Cars.com American-Made Index for 2022 is here. This list sorts out which companies are truly building cars in America and which are just assembling certain parts of the cars here. Unsurprisingly, Tesla has once again been named the “most American-made” carmaker. However, the surprise comes from the fact that not a single full-size pickup truck made the list at all.
No full-size pickup truck made the most American-made vehicles top 10
Not only did no full-size trucks make the list, but the only vehicle with a truck bed that cracked the top 10 was also the 2022 Honda Ridgeline. There is a certain amount of irony mixed in here. While the Honda is made in Alabama, the Ford F-150 or Ram 1500 or whatever seemingly “more American” trucks are built anywhere from here to Timbuktu – well, not here, per se. You get it.
The realization that the foreign companies are making more vehicles in America than any American truck builder is a strange one, indeed.
How do they decide which cars are the most American?
Cars.com has a fairly dialed process that looks at five different factors: location of final assembly, percentage of U.S. and Canadian parts, country of origin for available engines, country of origin for available transmissions, and U.S. manufacturing employees relative to the automaker’s footprint. And according to the list, the 2022 Honda Ridgeline met the criteria more than any other pickup truck on the market.
What models would you expect on this list? The Ford F-150? The Ram 1500? The Chevy Silverado? Well, the Ford landed in 21st, the Ram 45th, and Chevy 93rd out of 95 ranked vehicles. In part, the chip shortage has forced many automakers to source parts from other places than their normal outlets. This has surely had some effect on the rankings.
Are any other trucks even close to the top 10?
The Drive says that as recently as 2020, the Ford Ranger was in the number one position. The Chevrolet Colorado (10) and the GMC Canyon (11) were other high-ranking pickup trucks. Then on the 2021 list, the Tesla Model 3 topped the list, and the Ranger dropped to 23. It has since worked its way back to 17th place. As it stands, the GMC Canyon is the highest-ranking truck from an American company, in 12th place.
Are American-made pickup trucks better?
There was certainly a time when this was thought to be true and probably even was for a while. However, over the past few decades, models like the Toyota Tundra and Tacoma, just to name two, have sort of upended that belief.
We mention this only to say that “more American” doesn’t always mean “better.” Even if you really must have an American pickup truck, the only real option is the Honda.