General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) remains atop the list of an annual study ranking of which vehicles are most American, at a time when where cars are made has become a political issue.
The Chevrolet Traverse, Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia are tied for the top spots on the annual rankings from Kogod Made in America Auto Index. The other vehicles in the top five are the Ford F-150 and the Chevrolet Corvette.
The index, now in its fifth year, is produced by American University’s Kogod School of Business and uses data from the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
The study coincides with a renewed focus on where products bought in America are originated. President Trump notified Congress in May of his administration’s intent to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, which includes Canada and Mexico. As a candidate for president, Trump browbeat domestic car makers for importing cars from Mexico. Since he became president, he has threatened to enact a border tax in a tweet aimed at General Motors in January.
The study lists 419 vehicles with rankings from 1 to 90. It uses seven criteria, which include where the company is based, where the car is assembled, the location of research and development facilities, location of the assembly plant and evaluating domestic content data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
In 2016, the auto industry directly employed about 2.5 million workers and generated a record 17.5 million units in total vehicle sales, accounting for approximately 3.5% of the gross domestic product. Of the 17.5 million vehicles sold in the United States last year, about 65% were produced in the United States.
“A vehicle’s domestic manufacturing composition plays a key role in determining its overall impact on the American economy,” said the report. “This knowledge empowers consumers and automakers alike to make better economic decisions about where a car is made, and which offer the greatest commercial benefits to the country.”
Since the enactment of the American Automotive Labeling Act (AALA) in 1994, automakers are required to provide information on the label detailing the amount of U.S. and Canadian parts content, the country of assembly and the engine and transmission’s country of origin.