Corvette 'Most American' Sports Car

Cars​.com has released its annual list of the "most American" cars in the site‰Ûªs American-​Made Index. The Toyota Camry last claimed the top spot in 2012. This is the fifth time the Camry has ranked number one on the index. The American-​Made Index takes into account 3 key factors to determine how American cars are.

These include: domestic-​parts content (percentage of a vehicle‰Ûªs parts considered to be domestic, meaning built in the U.S. or Canada), final assembly point, and overall vehicle sales.

‰ÛÏThis year‰Ûªs list of eligible cars is down to just seven, the smallest number we‰Ûªve ever seen,‰Û said Cars​.com Editor-​in-​Chief, Patrick Olsen. ‰ÛÏJust five years ago, 29 cars qualified for the American-​Made Index, and today it is fewer than 10.‰Û

The Ford F‑150, which claimed the top spot in 2013 and 2014, was not eligible as its domestic-​parts content dropped below the allowable threshold in the all-​new 2015 model. In 2014, the index leaned heavily toward foreign-​based automakers, which made up 70 percent of the list.

  1. Toyota Camry
  2. Toyota Sienna
  3. Chevrolet Traverse
  4. Honda Odyssey
  5. GMC Acadia
  6. Buick Enclave
  7. Chevrolet Corvette

For 2015, that number has dropped to 48%. In a new survey conducted by Cars​.com, data indicates that American consumers care more than ever about buying from domestic automakers. 28% of respondents said they would only consider American automakers when shopping for a new car. That‰Ûªs up from 23% in 2011. While options for truly ‰ÛÏAmerican‰Û cars continue to shrink, Americans‰Ûª interest in buying cars that support the domestic economy is still of great interest.

"As Cars​.com releases its 2015 American-​Made Index, a new Cars​.com poll shows that loyalty to Detroit automakers is running stronger now than it did four years ago," Kelsey Mays wrote in the cars​.com blog post, "2015 American-​Made Index: Why Shoppers Care." "In the survey, 28% of respondents said they would only consider American automakers when they shop for a car. That's up from 23% in 2011. Just 6%, on the other hand, said they would only consider foreign-​based automakers."

"The reasons for the renewed American loyalty are unclear. Of the consumers who said they would only consider a U.S. automaker, 62% said it was because of specific loyalty to a brand (such as Chevrolet or Ford), while a little more than half said they wanted to buy American to support the local economy. But those two numbers are both down from 2011, when 74% of respondents cited brand loyalty and 70% named economic support as their reasons why. Respondents could choose as many, or as few, reasons as they wanted, and every single other reason, from patriotism to pricing, also fell from 2011 to 2015."

"Meanwhile, memory of the auto industry bailouts remains fresh. 84% of respondents said they were aware of the 2008 and 2009 bailouts, when the federal government spent some $80 billion to help GM and Chrysler, their finance arms and various auto suppliers. 70% correctly named GM as a bailout recipient, and 53% identified Chrysler as a recipient as well. But 29% lumped Ford into the pool, even though Ford Motor Co. didn't take bailout funds."

"Across the board, though, respondents didn't make a company's location a primary concern. Two-​thirds of respondents said an automaker's home country isn't a primary factor in their purchase decision. How much does the country matter? On an automaker-​by-​automaker basis, it's significant. The Detroit Three employ more American workers than foreign-​based automakers, and they also build the majority of cars containing high domestic content. But the American-​Made Index shows that, on a car-​by-​car basis, the badge doesn't always tell the whole story. Many cars from foreign-​based automakers, like the Toyota Camry and Honda Odyssey, contribute a lot to the U.S. economy."

"For some brands, there's still a disconnect between the badge and the country. The vast majority of respondents knew that brands such as Ford, Chevrolet and GMC are based in the U.S., and most knew that Nissan, Toyota and Honda are from Japan. But just 38% knew that Hyundai is based in South Korea, and only 31% identified Lexus, Toyota's luxury division, as Japanese. Another 31% said they didn't know where Lexus was based, and 21% thought Lexus was a U.S.-based brand. Irony, defined: Toyota doesn't assemble a single Lexus in America."

With the Chevy Corvette being lucky No. 7 on the list, you can use this to target sports car shoppers. According to AudienceSCAN, 2% of Americans are considering sports cars for their next vehicles. They are 61% more likely than average to be aged 25–34. And they're 87% more likely than average to have household incomes between $100,000 and $149,999. TV is effective: 52% saw commercials on TV (over-​the-​air, online, mobile or tablet) in the past month and then took action. But don't forget newspapers! 72% took action after seeing an ad there in the past year.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports inåÊAdMall.

Courtney Huckabay
Courtney is the Editor for SalesFuel Today. She analyzes secondary customer research and our primary AudienceSCAN research. Courtney is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.