Jeep Cherokee tops 2019 American Made Index; a bunch of 'foreign cars' follow

The Jeep Cherokee is built in Belvidere, Illinois.

Two of the top five cars in the 2019 American-Made Index are predictable. The Jeep Cherokee, built in Belvidere, Ill. and the Chevrolet Corvette, built in Bowling Green, Kentucky, take spots 1 and 5 as the most American-made. Honda grabs the three middle spots with the Odyssey, Ridgeline and Passport (all built in Lincoln, Alabama). But this yearly index doesn’t just go by what company sells the cars or where they’re built; the formula is bit more complicated than that.

The AMI considers five key factors: the final assembly location, the origin of parts as reported for the American Automobile Labeling Act, the origin country for its engines, the origin country for its transmissions and the number of Americans its parent automaker employs at the factory level. The list does not include nameplates with fewer than 2,500 sales in the first quarter of the respective year; it also excludes fleet-only cars and nameplates assembled exclusively abroad. The index also excludes heavy-duty vehicles.

The next cars on the list are also Honda or Honda-related. The Acura MDX is 6, assembled in East Liberty, Ohio and the Honda Pilot is 7, built in Lincoln, Alabama. The Chevy Colorado comes next followed closely by the GMC Caynon, both built at GM’s Wentzville, Missouri plant. Rounding out the top ten is the Acura RDX, which, like the MDX, is built in Ohio.

The Chevy Camaro comes next followed by Toyota’s first hit on the list, the Avalon. At number 13 Ford finally makes an appearance with the F-150, followed by the Honda Accord and the Toyota Tundra. If you’re counting, of the top 15 only six are from the U.S.-based companies.

The Ford Explorer dropped off the rankings this year due to the use of less domestic content; the Taurus and Volt also dropped off, but because they have been discontinued.

Last year the top ten were the Jeep Cherokee, Honda Odyssey and Ridgeline, Ford Taurus, Chevy Volt, Honda Pilot, Acura MDX, Ford Explorer, Ford F-150 and Chevy Corvette.

Like the J.D. Power rankings from last week, Tesla is not included. For this index the Silicon Valley-based company “declined to furnish enough information to be included.”

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