This year’s Consumer Reports list of Top Picks for car buyers doesn’t include any cars from the Big Three American car makers or, for that matter, any cars from a European company. All of the cars chosen were Japanese nameplates with Honda walking away with 5 out of the 10 slots. Ironically enough, several of these Japanese cars are actually built right here in North America.
The lone American model on last year’s list, the Ford Focus, was replaced this year by the new, redesigned Honda Civic.
Of the five Honda vehicles on Consumer Reports’ Top Picks, four are manufactured in the U.S. The remaining vehicle, the Honda Ridgeline, was designed and engineered in the U.S. but is built in Canada.
Of the five other vehicles in the list, two are Toyotas, two are Subarus and one is from Nissan’s Infiniti luxury division. Those remaining five are all are produced in Japan. – CNN.com – Honda cleans up in Consumer Reports picks
Since I started driving at the age of 16 all the cars I’ve ever owned were American nameplates (and most of them were GM brands), but this wasn’t necessarily because I felt any great devotion to the American companies despite growing up in an a big automotive state and having worked for two of the Big Three companies in the past. It was mainly due to my dad and his enthusiasm for all things produced by General Motors, in particular he’s been a long-time fan of Chevy cars and trucks.
My next car, however, is likely to be a Honda. In part because they’re on a roll right now and in part because there’s little being produced out of Detroit that really appeals to me. Just about every Honda owner I know loves their car and the company seems hell-bent on making sure people continue to love them. Toyota is another possibility I’m considering because of the hybrid Prius. With the way sales are growing for several Japanese companies—Toyota is on the verge of overtaking GM as the biggest automaker—it seems like a lot of other folks are of a similar mindset.
Around Detroit this thought process is more or less heretical to express openly, but it’s reflective of the problems the Big Three have been having for quite some time. When even long-time supporters like myself resolve to make their next car something other than what they’ve been buying all along the message to the automakers should be loud and clear.