Chevy Volt First Plug-In To Reach Most American-Made List

Chevy Volt


Bolt EV, LEAF, Tesla Model 3 and others don’t make list due to global sourcing of batteries or other vehicle parts.

Determining just how “American-Made” a car is isn’t a simple task. In fact, not all organizations that attempt to make such a determination agree. Last month, released their 2018 American Made Index (AMI) list.  Their evaluation considers five factors: assembly location, domestic-parts content, engine sourcing, transmission sourcing, and factory jobs provided by the automaker’s U.S. plants.

While has published the AMI for over a decade, in 2017 they updated their methodology. Prior to 2017, the AMI was based more heavily on the American Automobile Labeling Act (AALA) that does not distinguish between U.S. and Canadian parts. Their new analysis is focused purely on U.S. sourced components. In 2018, the Chevy Volt has made the list for the first time. In fact, the Volt is the first plug-in vehicle to make the list with 66% U.S.-sourced materials and labor.

Chevy Volt battery helps it become the first plug-in to rank in the top-10 on the AMI list.

Regarding the Chevy Volt and why most plug-ins do not make the list, states:

The Chicago-built Ford Taurus ranks No. 4, followed by the AMI’s highest-ranked newcomer, the No. 5 Chevrolet Volt. Plug-in cars, be they fully electric or a plug-in hybrid like the Volt, often lack high domestic content amid global sourcing for batteries — one of the most cost-intensive aspects of any car with a significant electric driving range. But the Volt’s battery is assembled near Detroit, with cells from a plant in western Michigan.

GM recently announced a series of upgrades at their Brownstown battery assembly plant near Detroit. In’s survey of 1,000 drivers, 83% claimed assembly location was an important factor in determining a cars economic impact. However, 7 in 10 respondents said other factors impacted their purchase decision more. They also found only ~53% of passenger-vehicle sales were assembled in the United States.


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54 Comments on "Chevy Volt First Plug-In To Reach Most American-Made List"

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Looking for smart, sexy women? This is the car.
It’s a smart chick magnet.

you obviously haven’t gone on youtube and checked out the “gold digger” videos.

lol…In your mind perhaps, reality is its the complete opposite…The ELR is the vehicle you’re thinking of…

I’m a bit disappointed my Model 3 only has 50% US/Canadian parts. I was surprised 25% also from Mexico.

It’s strange how Canada is okay and Mexico isn’t.

Is the race is a factor since Mexicans are not fluent in English?

Mexicans don’t look Norwegian enough. That’s what POTUS would say.

I think there is a lot of confusion in the United States about the racial make up of Mexicans and why Spanish is a bad language group. I’m going to assume people are just still upset about the Alamo.


Nah. Most Canadians visit America legally and go home eventually or legally get work permits. Huge amounts of illegal immigrants from south of the border drive down the entry wage level for everyone in this country. Both high school kids and adults without a high school education suffer due to the higher supply of unskilled labor. So farm produce costs 5 cents less a pound, and we can get our lawns mowed for $5 or $10 less than the kid next door would charge, but the negatives are bigger than the positives.
America needs immigrants, we just think we should get to choose the people that are immigrating to our country. That being said, we could do a lot worse than having Mexico on our southern border. Most of the Mexicans, Salvadorans, Guatemalans, etc. that come work hard and don’t commit any crime whatsoever. But the ones that do commit crimes kind of ruin it for the hard working, honest visitors/migrants.

Terrible. So Mexican-owned landscaping companies using experienced workers and specialized equipment are out-competing America’s most useless children (insert some connection here) therefore cars parts from Mexico are bad?

Questions: Can a child even properly landscape to begin with? That seems like it would take some specialized knowledge of horticulture. Second, paying a child to (kind of) tend to your yard seems more like a form of charity, but couldn’t we pay kids to do literally anything else in that case? Or maybe they can just get a job at a landscaping company and actually learn how to do it and make at least minimum wage. Lastly, you do realize landscaping companies aren’t all Mexican and Mexicans aren’t all landscapers and farmers right?

I’m getting the sense that the auto parts companies in Mexico simply out-competed the alternatives and there isn’t a point at lashing out a whole country over it.

Most of the “landscaping” work is just mowing lawns, edging and mulching. And I used to make good coin doing that, as did a lot of kids in my hometown. And we earned more than the minimum wage, if we weren’t lollygagging.
In most towns and larger cities now there are small companies with latino workers that do most of the mowing now and very few kids are getting paid to mow lawns other than their own (by their parents.) And most of the guys that do the work are here illegally.
“Experienced” in your post is synonymous with “illegal” in the vast majority of the cases around NoVA. The illegals will mow a lawn for less than a high school kid will, but that is not an un-alloyed good.
“specialized knowledge of horticulture”? LOL! Most of the lawn guys near me can’t even figure out how to use a leaf blower properly.

So you’re bad at landscaping? This is ridiculous. The average Hispanic-American is living way, way above minimum wage.

This is fairly ignorant and I don’t care about child lawn mowing. If you start now teaching them how to be decent and respectful, maybe your children can cut lawns for Mexican-American professionals some day? Best of luck to them I guess.

LOL! I was pretty good at “landscaping” and had all the work I wanted during the summer. And if you think that illegals are living way above minimum wage, you are dreaming. And yes, there is a difference between “illegals” and “Hispanic American” that you don’t seem to want to recognize. The legal Latinos make a lot more than the illegals do, for obvious reasons. And the illegals hurt Americans who happen to have less education and are competing for the base level jobs. And that impacts communities of color more than lily white parts of America.
We should all be decent and respectful of all of our neighbors, regardless of race or class, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t strongly encourage the illegals to go home. If they are here illegally, they are criminals and should be deported, both for breaking the law and for the negative impact illegal immigration has on law abiding Americans.

It doesn’t really matter whether it’s a Norwegian Nimber Task, or a Latino Day Laborer, the job has to be done, no matter which Nationality carries it out.

Seems like it would be a Mexican mechanical engineering firm in this case.

I’m guessing it doesn’t matter here whether the Canadians in question are only fluent in French or whether the Mexicans in question are in fact fluent in English since that wasn’t part of the study. It’s would be kind of weird to be worried about the language of the people who produced a car part more so than whether the car is American or not though.

The U.S. has a trade balance advantage over Canada and workers make the same wages. Not so with Mexico.

I don’t think it’s “race”. Mexico hasn’t distinguished itself as a high quality manufacturer center.

No reason to think a cars or parts made in Mexico or Canada is inherently poor quality.

I think the goal of their list is more about providing info to those who are concerned about supporting U.S. jobs. Especially considering how many were lost in the last recession.

It isn’t a primary factor in my vehicle purchases, but I understand that for some people it is important.

It’s very important to anyone living in any country. Manufacturing jobs are good jobs, North Americans lost trust in American cars when labor unions began making it possible for those workers to not give a damn about the quality of the product they produced. It became possible to get higher and higher wages and do a crappier job, or not show up at all and never risk being fired. It got to incredibly embarrassing levels in the 1980s and ’90s as described buy industry professionals in such factories and by the pathetic quality of the cars which became laughing stock. Foreign car companies were eating their lunch and the average American car consumer ditched nationalism and patriotism for quality in a lasting product. After all, it is the second largest material item most of us will buy in our lifetime in percentage of our incomes. Before this, Americans would buy Ford’s, Chrysler and GM – fresh off a world war, as an act of national pride. We saw all American car companies collapse ten years ago, even Ford, which only squeaked past bankruptcy due to rather risky financing just before the economic meltdown. Even the U.S. and Canadian governments could… Read more »

Clearly it has?

Mexico is “American”. See my post above.

The US is what most people mean when they say or hear “American”. You can dislike this obviously illogical fact, but it is a true statement. “American” means they are from the States, Latin American means they are hispanic and North American, to most, means Canada and the US, even though Mexico is really part of North America, by most definitions.
But feel free to point out that the US shouldn’t have a monopoly on “American”. 😉

Hi Raymond. You are basing your argument on a technicality. Is it even worth the effort? To me, the only reason to make such a statement is in support of a completely open border between the United States Of America (Yes that is the official name of my country) and Mexico. When I travel in Central America the citizens openly tell me their governments are very corrupt. We know corruption exists in every nation, yet these people speak of corruption on all levels of authority, down to the motorcycle cop who pulls over your taxi and openly exchanges cash with the driver in a curbside “deal”. These government officials basically all are ATMs sold out to the highest bidder. Even though the politicians in Washington D.C. have taken the step to police themselves, bipartisanly agreeing to vote down McCain-Feingold and any other law that curtails their money gravey train, remarkably, we in the USA still have a structure of checks and balances that prevent the kind of enormous widespread corruption seen in Central and South America. Maybe if Mexico would agree to obey the U,S, Constitution and Bill of Rights, we should find a way to incorporate their entire country… Read more »

Puerto Rico would be a tough case for the US systems to reduce the graft and bribery after they join the US. It is really endemic and it is crippling Puerto Rico. I don’t think they are ready to do what it would take to reduce the corruption enough to get down to the admittedly abysmal level of corruption here in the States.
Another issue is that it is a population that appears to poll at around 70% support for Democrat Party policies. If they come in, another state that leans towards the GOP would have to come in at the same time, ala the Alaska/Hawaii deal back in the day.

Where did you find that info? I looked at the site and the American Made Index but all the links were just links to various cars with no percentage US attached.

My Model 3 Monroney sticker (actually a print out these days).

Come on guys, “surprised” doesn’t make me against Mexico. I was expecting it to be Japan/South Korea based on Model S/X parts. I was expecting higher US parts since so much is made here now including the cells and battery pack.

Good news! My 2013 Volt was 40% made in America, if memory serves. The LG Chem pack used to be manufactured in Korea, I believe. I have to check on this because it will be nice to quantify just how much more domestic production is in the new Volt vs. the Gen 1.

Yes, your battery cells were made in S. Korea. Some time in late July 2013, the then two year old LG Chem plant in Holland, Michigan began making their first battery cells for the Volt. Since those batteries require a settling time before they can be used in a car, the first American made pack’s showed up in the 2014 model year Volts.

GM has done a great job with Volt in moving the manufacturing of many of It’s major components from elsewhere to the United States. Just some examples are 2nd gen Volt gas range extenders from Mexico to Flint, MI and GM designed electric motors from Japan to the Hitachi plant in Kentucky.

Recently the industry has balked at demands to reveal proprietary information concerning operations to the U.S. government, and get this they have to, or so say the Commerce Dep, since this information is needed to prove that the U.S. auto industry must be protected as a case of national security, as they once again go to that well to try to legitimize their Draconian demands, one of which is delineation of all parts going into a vehicle, where they sourced, how much they cost, if there are U.S. alternatives, basically open all your books to us.

What’s ironic is the industry wants nothing to do with these demands, this new tariff, nor the Trump tariffs on steel & aluminum.
The administration says tough, but the industry will fight it. Industry heads are scratching theirs thinking, what happened?
This was supposed to be the hands-off Federal Government, what they didn’t know was, it’s also a Feral Government.
So lock up your daughters and turn out the lights, ’cause the Trump-Man is a comin’, and he’s gotta a big overbite.

I’m a Conservative, but lately “Conservatives” in no way speak for me. Our US Constitution gives CONGRESS the power to REGULATE trade – there is no mention of “free trade” which is just a moniker really meaning downgrading labor down to the lowest worldwide cost. At the expense of many American Jobs. To REGULATE or a REGULATOR, 250 years ago, meant literally “to make REGULAR”. This partially explains Trump’s nationwide popularity, although he is full of much malarkey .

I suppose Snooty people never cared as long as it was rank-and-file Union workers getting axed. But then India is taking over back office I/S and Pakistan call center duties. Soon China will be taking over design work, as well as Spain taking over design work for New York State Electric & Gas as well as Rochester Gas and Electric (same company).

I’m sure it is fighting a losing cause, but it is good to have SOME industry for the next generations. Battery and Car manufacturing is a good place, since wealth (and knowledge) is created on the factory floor.

85% of Trump’s tax cut went the the 1%. Thru the tax system they are even more rich then 99% of the population, and unless you win the lottery you’ll never get into the 1%, with the growing vast gulf between the groups.

So, this is why Trump enjoys rich support. They literally live an easy immoral life on our backs, by year after year doing as close to nothing as possible.

Ha, at least something electric is made in the States. Congratulations UAW and GM.

“American made” does not mean U.S. only made. “America” includes all the territories of the American Hemisphere, from Alaska and Canada to Chile and Argentina. Either change the title or include U.S. brands assembled in Canada, Mexico, and any other nation south of the U.S. borders. The name of our nation is ‘The United States of America” which is a Union of States in the American Hemisphere.

It’s American-made index. We didn’t choose the name, but we are going to call it what it’s called. There is a link to it as the source at the bottom of the post. Cars clearly explains its methodology. They’ve always called it that and it’s assumed that people will understand. It’s a more “loose” use of the term.

For consumers who want to support the U.S. economy, determining a product’s homegrown credentials is no easy task in today’s global economy

Yeah, I know what you mean and agree that if is going to change the focus to be on the U.S. only, they should probably change the name! They probably haven’t done so yet just for the AMI name recognition that has been around for a while.

For now they haven’t changed it… maybe send a suggestion to their editorial staff? 🙂


I know you’re technically correct. But, in reality, America means the US to most people today.

“I know you’re technically correct. But, in reality, America means the US to most people [in the US] today .”


Side note: Often when you travel to foreign countries, you will find that in many places they don’t even call the “United States” the “United States”. Nor do they actually call their own nation the name that people in the United States call their nation.

Whenever I’m overseas I generally respond with “America” when I’m asked where I’m from. I’ve never had any confusion about my meaning. They know I mean the US, not Canada or somewhere else in North/South America.

By the same token, I’ve never heard a Canadian or someone from the rest of North/South America refer to themselves as “Americans.”

People can not like it, but that’s the reality.

Most Canadians would be mildly insulted if you called them Americans. Some would be a bit more irritated than “mildly”. 😉

Just because most people may agree with you, does not mean you are correct

Doesn’t mean I’m wrong either. It’s just the way things are.

Lol. If you seriously think that Canada, Mexico, or Argentina are part of “America”, then you’re clearly not an American.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

I know a vendor from back in the day that manufactured in Mexico. They purchased 80% of the parts, manufactured and made in the US, then sold the module/subassembly to us in the US and the module/subassembly was considered 100% made in Mexico……….lol

Looks like a solid win for Chevy. Especially after all the BS thrown at them about “Gov’t Motors” by the far right who said there was no reason to bail them out. This is the reason right here. Made in ‘Merica.

Here is how the Volt years compare to each other and to other cars. (Wade/Steve, you are welcome to add this to the article if you want)
Title: Monroney sticker Part Content Info for low-mid $ EVs

Cool post, Scott!

The sticker on my 2012 Volt says the engine was made in Austria, which I believe was the case for all 2011 and most 2012 Volts. Then the engine plant in the US came online and took over.

Yes, to settle a labor dispute in Austria at the time, GM chose the reliable naturally aspirated 4 cylinder in lieu of the 3 cyl turbo at first suggested by the Concept Car.

The discussion of “where” a car is built kind of bugs me. It ignores all the work done by engineers, designers, businessmen, accountants, etc etc that put arguably more effort into a car than the final assembly, which more and more seems to be done by robot more than people.

Relax, those ‘High Skill’ Jobs are also going oversees. If the design work can be sent over a fiber optic cable, then that job is in jeopardy.

Why hire a Silicon Valley designer or manager for $100k if an Indian will do it for $12k?

That is the thinking in board rooms today.