Toyota Camry takes top spot in annual ranking

By Steven Cole Smith

TRIBUNE NEWSPAPERS

 

Each year, Cars.com releases its American-Made Index. Evaluations “are based on percentage [by cost] of their parts that are made domestically, where they are built and how popular they are among U.S. buyers.” For the last five years, the Ford F-150 pickup, the best-selling vehicle in America 30-plus years and running, has also topped the list. This year, it dropped to second behind the Toyota Camry. Two of the three factors in developing the list are no-brainers. One is the percentage of American-made parts, as listed on the vehicle window sticker. The 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS, for instance, has 60 percent “U.S./Canadian parts content.” Camaro also has 24 percent content from Mexico, which isn’t considered part of the states. The second factor in the Cars.com evaluation is assembly location. “Ninety-seven percent of the Camrys sold here were built in the U.S,” says Patrick Olsen, editor in chief of Cars. com, which is partly owned by Chicago Tribune parent Tribune Co. The third criteria, sales volume, factors in the financial impact of the sales on the U.S. economy.

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