Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Buy American?

I was reading the NY Times on Sunday and there was an article about the American automotive industry. The article talked about how GM has lost ground in the automotive sales world. At one time the Impala was the number one car in the world but today that title belongs to a Japanese car, the Toyota Corolla. The article discussed how the US automotive industry has concentrated on SUVs and has lost ground to the Japanese car manufacturers who concentrate their engineering efforts on just a few models and try to make those few models the best that they can. GM spreads their efforts to many car models across several brands thus preventing them from concetrating their engineering efforts. It was all fascinating but the one thing that made me laugh had to do with the definition of American vs. Japanese cars. As it turns out, the number one American passenger car is manufactured in Canada. The number one Japanese passenger car is manufactured in the USA. So which Americans are your car dollars going to? If you buy an "American" car, your money is going to wealthy American executives and if you buy a "Japanese" car, your money is going to middle-class American auto workers.

2 comments:

Elblog said...

I saw a show recently on PBS about the largest emerging market for cars - China - and how GM was setting up for massive business there. So it's more complicated than most of us realize. . .

Stacey Wilson said...

American auto makers must be able to keep up with the competition. They should be up to date with surveys like AutoPacific's VSA to know just how well they are doing. If not, they just might find themselves out of business.