If there’s ever been a car that represents the red, white, and blue American ideal, it’s got to be the Chevrolet Corvette.
No wonder, then, that the totally new 2014 Corvette Stingray rumbled to the top of a special ranking of the “most American” vehicles compiled recently by a Washington, D.C., university.
Researchers at American University’s Kogod School of Business have come up with an objective way to decide just how American a vehicle really is.
They use seven factors each year to decide the Kogod Made in America Auto Index, including where the body, interior, chassis, and electrical parts are manufactured (50 percent); where the engine (14 percent) and transmission (7 percent) are made; site of inventory, capital, and other expenses (11 percent); where research and development is done (6 percent); where the car is assembled (6 percent); and where the profit margin goes (6 percent).
They also add each vehicle’s score from the American Automotive Labeling Act, which was passed by Congress and requires passenger vehicles manufactured after Oct. 1, 1994 to have labels specifying their percentage value of U.S./Canadian parts content, the country of assembly, and countries of origin of the engine and transmission.
Based on all these criteria, Kogod ranks the Corvette Stingray and Ford F-150 in a tie atop the Most American list, each with a score of 87.5 out of a possible 100.
Both of the champions lost 12.5 points for having 25 percent of their body, chassis, and electrical components made in foreign countries.
Close behind these two iconic vehicles were four General Motors SUVs – the Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia, and GMC Acadia Denali, all of which scored an 86 to tie for second place, thanks to having a slightly higher percentage of foreign-made parts than the Corvette and the F-150.
In fact, GM dominated the Kogod ranking with 18 of the top 21 vehicles (Ford had the other three). In case you’re wondering, the lowest-ranked vehicle was the Japanese-made Toyota Yaris with a score of 1.
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