The 30 Most American-Made Cars of 2017

Most auto consumers know it takes more than a badge from Detroit to call a car “American.” Even before Italian automaker Fiat bought the Chrysler Group, GM was importing cars with Chevrolet emblems from factories in Korea and Toyota was building its flagship Camry sedan in Kentucky. They call it globalization, and it can be more than a little complicated.

In fact, it takes a lot of research to determine how much U.S. content ends up in a car these days. Fortunately, the team at American University’s Kogod School of Business handles the job with the annual Made in America Auto Index. Counting the source of parts (50%), engine and transmission production (21%), factory and storage (17%), site of corporate headquarters (6%), and research facilities (6%), Professor Frank DuBois and staff come up with a score based on a total of 100 points.

As per usual, more than one third of the vehicles found to be the most American come from foreign brands. We hope — as with Consumer Reports reliability reports and safety ratings — these rankings help if you are buying a new car. Here are the 30 most American-made cars of 2017.

30. Honda Civic

Silver Honda Civic sedan

2017 Honda Civic sedan | Honda

Total domestic content: 76%

Honda opened its Greensburg (Ind.) plant in 2008, and the site only produces the Civic and CR-V for the American market. Considering those two models consistently rank among the top 10 in U.S. sales, they keep the staff busy. On the Made in America index, Civic EX-L four-door sedans scored 76 out of 100, which was the best of any compact car on the U.S. market.

29. Toyota Avalon

2016-17 Toyota Avalon in white

2017 Toyota Avalon | Toyota

Total domestic content: 76%

You will find American workers assembling the Toyota Avalon in Georgetown (Kentucky), and that element of production boosted the car’s score to 76 out of 100. This full-sized sedan remains not only one of the most American cars out there; it’s also one of the most durable. In the surveys of cars lasting past 200,000 miles, you always find Avalon near the top.

28. Honda Accord

2016 Honda Accord Sedan Sport | Honda

Total domestic content: 76%

In 2016, Honda produced almost 70% of the cars the automaker sold in America, which was the second highest total of any manufacturer. Marysville, Ohio workers do the honors on the Accord sedans that scored 76 on the Made in America index. For shoppers who want the most domestic content, four-door Sport and Sport SE models are the ones to buy.

27. Acura MDX

2017 Acura MDX

2017 Acura MDX | Acura

Total domestic content: 76%

American-made models of the Acura MDX come from the Honda plant in Lincoln (Ala.) that opened in 2001. This SUV is one of the more attractive models in a highly competitive segment, and continues to hold its own on the sales charts. (It ranked 89th with over 55,000 sales in 2016.) Starting at $44,050, you get an idea how Honda gets more out of its profit margins by keeping this model close to where the sales are.

26. Honda Odyssey

View of 2017 Odyssey minivan at amusement park

2017 Honda Odyssey | Honda

Total domestic content: 76%

Continuing the run of foreign-branded American cars is the Honda Odyssey minivan, which pulled in with 76% U.S. content. Assembled in Alabama, this model was the best by far among minivans on the Made in America index at 76%. If you’re looking for the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica, you won’t find it among the top 100. The Pacifica registered just 44% domestic content in the Kogod School of Business study.

25. Ford Mustang

View of 2017 Mustang GT in red

2017 Ford Mustang GT | Ford

Total domestic content: 76%

If you’re talking about symbolism, there may be no car more American than the Ford Mustang. But if we’re breaking down vehicles by domestic content, it has a long way to go at 76% overall. Like every other car on the U.S. market, Mustang has some parts sourced from overseas that enter the equation at its Flat Rock (Mich.) assembly plant.

24. Chevrolet Camaro

View of Chevy Camaro SS on scenic road at dusk

2017 Chevrolet Camaro SS | General Motors

Total domestic content: 77%

Most people already know whether they are Mustang or Camaro people. It’s a lot like what baseball team you come to like as a kid or what food becomes your favorite; it just happens. Anyway, if you were hoping for the Made in America index to tip the scale one way or the other, this one’s too close to call (much like it is at the track). Camaro beat Mustang by only one point (77%) for the 2017 model year. May the feud continue.

23. Dodge Durango R/T

Shot of gray Dodge Durango

2017 Dodge Durango | Dodge

Total domestic content: 77%

You get a minimum 295 horsepower and a towing capacity of 6,200 pounds in the base Dodge Durango. When you upgrade to the R/T, power specs jump to 360 horses and 390 pound-feet of torque, enough to tow 7,600 pounds. This R/T model, which features the very American 5.7-liter Hemi engine, also contains the most domestic content (77%) of any Durango. It’s an SUV that comes straight from Detroit.

22.  Chrysler 200

2016 Chrysler 200

2017 Chrysler 200 | Chrysler

Total domestic content: 77%

Though FCA ended production of the Chrysler 200 in December 2016, the midsize sedan nevertheless persists on the market as a ’17 edition.  It was built in Sterling Heights (Mich.) in a plant that will become the production site for the next-generation Ram 1500. While this car was known as one of the least reliable vehicles on the market, it does have midsize sedans from from Ford and GM beat on U.S. content. Chrysler’s 200 boasted a score of 77 on the Made in America index.

21. Malibu Hybrid

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 1: GM Executive Vice President of Global Product Development Mark Reuss introduces the new Malibu and hybrid Malibu models at the New York International Auto Show at the Javits Center on April 1, 2015 in New York City.

2017 Malibu Hybrid | Kevin Hagen/Getty Images

Total domestic content: 78%

You would have to go farther down the list to find the standard Chevy Malibu (64%), but the hybrid version of Chevy’s midsize sedan ranks among the most American at 78% U.S. content. This model peaks at 49 mpg in city driving (43 mpg highway) and brings the style upgrade of the redesigned Malibu. That plus the assurance of U.S. production makes it a reasonable buy at $27,875.

20. Ford Explorer

ford explorer

2017 Ford Explorer | Ford

Total domestic content: 78%

Explorer is one Ford’s best-selling vehicles and, according to the Made in America index for 2017, one of its most American with 78% U.S. content. UAW workers at the Chicago Assembly Plant produce this model for both the domestic and export markets. Since 2008, Explorer was one of the cars people held onto the longest. We’re guessing this attachment has a lot to do with craftsmanship.

19. Honda Ridgeline

Front three quarter view of silver 2017 Honda Ridgeline

2017 Honda Ridgeline | Honda

Total domestic content: 78.5%

You won’t find a Chevy Silverado or Ram pickup among the top 30 in U.S. content, but you will find the Alabama-built Honda Ridgeline. With 78.5% domestic content, it joins five other vehicles with the ninth highest figure on the Made in America index. All six models with a score of 78.5 come from automakers with headquarters overseas.

18.  Acura RDX

Total domestic content: 78.5%

In one of the great ironies of the modern auto market, luxury SUV shoppers who bought an Acura RDX would get one of the most American models available. The Ohio-assembled compact utility model scored 78.5 out of 100 in the Kogod School’s 2017 auto index, putting it light years ahead of anything by BMW and Lexus.

17. Honda CR-V

View of 2017 Honda CR-V in burnt orange at sunset with ocean in background

2017 Honda CR-V | Honda

Total domestic content: 78.5%

The Honda CR-V has been one of America’s favorite vehicles for years, and consumers who drove one home may have contributed more to the national economy than they knew. CR-V with all-wheel drive (78.5%) and front-wheel drive (76%) both posted strong scores on the Made in America index. After seeing so many of the brand’s vehicles on this list, we wouldn’t blame you for considering Honda a U.S. automaker.

16. Kia Optima

Kia Optima SX 2.0 turbo | Kia

Total domestic content: 78.5%

You cannot be an NBA fan and miss the steady sponsorship by Kia Motors America, and the star of those commercials is the Georgia-built Optima sedan. Consumers who choose the models featuring the 2.0-liter engine buy a vehicle with 78.5% of its content sourced in the U.S. Kia also builds Sedona in the same West Point facility that opened in 2006.

15. Honda Pilot

2017 Honda Pilot Elite | Honda

Total domestic content: 78.5%

Pilot is the last of eight Honda vehicles among the top 30 on the Made in America index of 2017. Like the others, this SUV features an overwhelming majority of U.S. parts and assembly at an Alabama plant. Pilot’s only non-American elements are its corporate headquarters, research facilities, and a small number of body and electrical components. It scored 78.5 out of 100.

14. Toyota Camry

2017 Toyota Camry | Toyota

Total domestic content: 78.5%

America’s favorite car has long been one of the most American. Workers at Toyota’s Kentucky plant have been on the job since 1986, and in ’88 the first Camry rolled off the line there. In 2015-16, Toyota U.S. plants averaged over 2 million vehicles per year. As for Camry, its high percentage of domestic parts helped boost its Made in America score to 78.5 out of 100.

13. Jeep Cherokee

View of 2017 Jeep Cherokee Overland in white

2017 Jeep Cherokee | Jeep

Total domestic content: 79%

Fiat Chrysler may be an Italian company, but Jeep Cherokee remained one of the most American-made vehicles of the 2017 model year. Workers in the company’s Toledo plant produced this model for much of the 21st century, but it moved to Belvidere (Ill.) in April 2017. Even being docked a few point for Fiat’s overseas headquarters, Cherokee still scored 79 out of 100 on the 2017 index.

12. Cadillac CT6

2016 Cadillac CT6 | Cadillac

Total domestic content: 80%

Folks generally think of big luxury cars  — not SUVS or performance coupes — when they hear “Cadillac,” and the brand got back to its roots with the CT6 sedan. The platinum all-wheel drive model ($85,290) offers the tech and amenities to make it a true Mercedes S-Class competitor. For consumers hoping to get high-end luxury in a genuine American model, this CT6 delivers with a score of 80 on the Kogod Made in America index.

11. Chevrolet Colorado

View of red 2017 Chevy Colorado in profile

2017 Chevrolet Colorado | General Motors

Total domestic content: 80%

Though Chevy’s full-size Silverado ended up way down the list (44% U.S. content), midsize Chevy pickups were among the industry’s most American models with 80% domestic content. Workers at the GM plant in Wentzville (outside of St. Louis) assemble this model as well as the GMC Canyon. An off-road Colorado dubbed ZR2 also entered the fray for 2017.

10. Cadillac ATS/CTS

2017 Cadillac CTS-V super sedan and 2017 Cadillac ATS-V Sedan with the available Carbon Black sport package. The Carbon Black sport package – which includes the first-ever Black Chrome grille for V-Series models and the first-ever RECARO front seats for Cadillac ATS Sedan and Coupe models among additional exterior and interior appointments – further enhances the engaging performance and the striking design of Cadillac’s driver’s cars.

2017 Cadillac CTS-V and ATS-V with Carbon Black sport package | Cadillac

Total domestic content: 80%

What’s the difference between Cadillac CTS and Cadillac ATS? Well, one (ATS) is slightly smaller and offers less power in its base engine. Otherwise, they are very similar. In terms of U.S. content, both score very high on the Made in America index, with ATS all-wheel drive sedans topping the bunch at 80%. Other ATS and CTS models ranked just below with 77% domestic content.

9. Ford Taurus

ford taurus SHO

2017 Ford Taurus SHO | Ford

Total domestic content: 80.5%

Back when Taurus was Fords’s best-selling car, it was a smaller sedan that appealed to a huge swath of consumers who wanted to buy American. These days, it’s the largest sedan in the brand lineup and more of a play for Chinese consumers than anything else. Nonetheless, the American model is very much a domestic product with 80.5% U.S. content. Workers at Ford’s Chicago plant assemble Taurus.

8. Lincoln Navigator

Low-angle view of blue Lincoln Navigator

2017 Lincoln Navigator | Lincoln

Total domestic content: 80.5%

The redesigned 2018 Lincoln Navigator wowed auto show audiences and will debut late in 2017, but the outgoing model is one of the most American-made out there with a score of 80.5 on the Kogod School auto index. As for the next generation, it looks like Navigator will remain a mostly U.S. product for now. New Ford CEO Tom Hackett said the company will invest $900 million in the Kentucky plant where it’s made.

7. Ford Expedition

2017 Ford Expedition front 3/4 running view

2017 Ford Expedition | Ford

Total domestic content: 81%

Along with Navigator, Kentucky Ford workers will continue assembling the Expedition full-size SUV, which checks in at seventh place with 81% U.S. content. Expedition’s biggest selling point might be its longevity. When iSeeCars looked at vehicles with over 200,000 miles up for sale in 2017, Expedition had the most of any other car (nearly 6%).

6. Jeep Wrangler

2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

2017 Jeep Wrangler | Jeep

Total domestic content: 81.5%

If you think about the iconic American vehicles that will never die, Jeep Wrangler is one of the first that comes to mind. The Jeep got its start as an Army vehicle in World War II and evolved over the years into what it is today. You can still see a lot of the original’s DNA in this model, and Fiat Chrysler continues producing it as a mostly American-made vehicle with 81.5% domestic content.

5. Chevrolet Corvette

View of gray Corvette Stingray in motion

2017 Corvette Stingray | Chevrolet

Total domestic content: 82%

Chevrolet Corvette enjoys a reputation as one of the best cars from an American brand, and it’s 2017 model continues the tradition of high domestic content (82% with automatic transmission). Since 1981, GM employees at the Bowling Green plant have been the exclusive producer of Corvette. More than 60 years after the first Corvette debuted, the sports car is the longest continually produced passenger vehicle.

4. Ford F-150

Action shot of dark gray 2017 Ford F-150 moving through a muddy puddle

2017 Ford F-150 | Ford

Total domestic content: 85%

You can trace the roots of Ford F-150 trucks back to 1948, and 70 years later America’s favorite vehicle was still going strong. At the start of 2017, it claimed over three decades as the U.S. sales leader. Ford has every reason to keep its most profitable product as a Made in America product, and for the latest model boasted 85% domestic content. Workers in Dearborn (site of Ford’s corporate headquarters) assemble F-150.

3. GMC Acadia

Black 2017 Acadia seen in front three quarter view from driver side

2017 GMC Acadia | General Motors

Total domestic content: 85.5%

Part of a three-way tie for the most American-made vehicle of 2017, GMC Acadia is the large crossover from a brand known mostly for its trucks. Consumers on the hunt for something with three rows of seating, decent fuel economy (26 mpg highway), and a starting price below $30,000 will want to take a look at this model. As fas as U.S. content goes, it takes second place to no one at 85.5%. Acadia’s new production home will be in Spring Hill, Tennessee starting late 2017.

2. Buick Enclave

On the Kogod Made in America auto index for 29017, Buick Enclave tied two other GM models for most U.S. content.

2017 Buick Enclave | Buick

Total domestic content: 85.5%

Of the three GM models running on this crossover platform, Buick Enclave offers the most high-end touches and the best styling. (Naturally, it’s also the most expensive at $39,065.) Workers at the Lansing Delta plant in Michigan assemble these models, which share a Made in America Auto Index score of 85.5.

1. Chevrolet Traverse

Front three quarter view of red Chevrolet Traverse

2017 Chevrolet Traverse | General Motors

Total domestic content: 85.5%

For the third straight year, Chevy Traverse was the vehicle with most American content with a score of 85.5 on the Made in America index. Of the three GM vehicles running on this platform, Traverse is the most affordable ($28,700) and the best-selling model. Since the last count, Traverse dropped 4.5% of its domestic content for parts and electrical components from overseas. In 2017, no car available on the U.S. market can claim to be even 90% American.

Source: Kogod School of Business Made in America Auto Index

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