As President Donald Trump's tariff threats loom and globalization increasingly blurs the lines between what's "made in USA" and what's not, Americans worry about what restrictions on automobile imports would mean for domestic jobs and car prices.
That's according to Cars.com data released Tuesday, which found that about half of all U.S. consumers are concerned about the possibility of the president slapping taxes on car goods coming from other countries.
What complicates the situation even further for buyers is that knowing what constitutes an American brand or model can be tricky because having a U.S. automaker’s emblem on your car doesn’t necessarily mean that it was built in the states – just as cars with a Korean or Japanese logo on them could have been constructed in Alabama.
Cars.com's data broke apart the hazy criteria when creating its 2019 American-Made Index (AMI), which ranks the top 15 new vehicles that contribute most to the U.S. economy, and found that consumers looking for a new set of wheels have a reason to be concerned.
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“Tariffs or other changes in trade policy could have a major impact on consumers and the auto industry, including rising costs,” said Kelsey Mays, senior editor at Cars.com.
“It’s no small task to move supply chains, much less alter where a car or its major components are built – both factors that influence AMI rankings. Such actions take years to plan, negotiate and implement.”
Few of the vehicles on Cars.com's list indicated major manufacturing changes as a result of imposed tariffs, Mays said, which comes as no surprise since American-made vehicles are largely resilient to tariffs.
The most 'American' car
For the second year in a row, the Jeep Cherokee, which is built in Belvidere, Illinois, took the top spot on Cars.com's American-Made Index.
In 2018, the report found that the Cherokee was made up of 72% domestic parts.
Other determining factors include engine sourcing and transmission sourcing, according to Cars.com.
Japanese automaker Honda's Odyssey minivan and Ridgeline pickup took the second and third spots, respectively, again this year, while Honda's Passport edged into the fourth-place position, which was occupied by the Chicago-built Ford Taurus in 2018. All three Hondas are made in Lincoln, Alabama.
About 120 models are being assembled in the U.S. for the 2019 model year, and more than 50% of vehicles bought by consumers are built in the states, Cars.com found.
Neither amount has changed significantly over the past year.
Top 15 most “American-made” vehicles
The list, ranked from highest to lowest, shows where each vehicle is assembled.
1. Jeep Cherokee, Belvidere, Illinois
2. Honda Odyssey, Lincoln, Alabama
3. Honda Ridgeline, Lincoln, Alabama
4. Honda Passport, Lincoln, Alabama
5. Chevrolet Corvette, Bowling Green, Kentucky
6. Acura MDX (excludes hybrid variants), East Liberty, Ohio
7. Honda Pilot, Lincoln, Alabama
8. Chevrolet Colorado, Wentzville, Missouri
9. GMC Canyon, Wentzville, Missouri
10. Acura RDX, East Liberty, Ohio
11. Chevrolet Camaro, Lansing, Michigan
12. Toyota Avalon (excludes hybrid variants), Georgetown, Kentucky
13. Ford F-150, Claycomo, Missouri / Dearborn, Michigan
14. Honda Accord, Marysville, Ohio
15. Toyota Tundra, San Antonio
Follow Dalvin Brown on Twitter: @Dalvin_Brown.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Jeep Cherokee remains the most American car of the year, according to Cars.com