Tesla Soon To Hold Bragging Rights To Most American-Made Automobiles

3 years ago by Eric Loveday 34

Tesla Model S

Tesla Model S

Tesla's Fremont Factory

Tesla’s Fremont Factory

For quite awhile Ford has been able to claim the title of having the ‘most American’ vehicle available for sale in the US.  However, a recently piece by The Motley Fool highlights that is likely to change soon.

“Ford retained its bragging rights this year on Cars.com’s just-released annual list of the top American-made cars. The F-150 ranked first, thanks to continued strong sales and domestic-parts sourcing. But one new American automaker soon may be poised to become more red, white, and blue than any other manufacturer in the world: electric-car maker Tesla Motors.”

Motley Fool argues that once the Tesla gigafactory is up and running, Tesla Motors will hold all bragging rights to most American-made automobiles:

More American-made than the F150?
Today, Tesla claims that its electric sedan has about 55% American- and Canadian-made content. But the vehicle is about to get an American-made boost.

After the Gigafactory is built, and thanks to Tesla’s proposed efforts to source Gigafactory materials from the U.S., about 90% of Model S content could come from the U.S — a figure that would beat out any other vehicle sold in the Land of the Free.

Ford won’t be thrilled by the America-made takeover, as the automaker often relies on this American-made aspects in its various F-150 commercial.  So, either Ford will up the American-madeness (definitely not a real word) of the F-150 or Tesla will steal the crown in a few year’s time.

Source: The Motley Fool

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34 responses to "Tesla Soon To Hold Bragging Rights To Most American-Made Automobiles"

  1. ffbj says:

    This will prove to be an ironic conundrum for those who push the made in America line.

    1. Stimpacker says:

      Makes you wonder how politicians can stomach denying Tesla the right to sell in their states? How long can they remain loyal to dealership donors instead of the American public that they swore to serve?

    2. John Hansen says:

      Why would it be ironic? Is it ironic that the most American made car is electric? I’m not seeing the irony.

      By the way, it’s a good idea to buy American products. It supports your neighbors and the social welfare system in this country, which most people would claim to be in favor of. It’s also absolutely not a uniquely American thing. Japanese and Germans are almost exclusively loyal to their own brands, and nobody would claim that either Japanese or German people are dumb rednecks. Quite the opposite actually. Maybe they know something that you don’t.

      1. David Stone says:

        It is not a good idea to buy american products as a rule. Such dumb nationalism leads to isolation and xenophbia. Gobal trade is good and if done without corruption keeps companies innovative through more competition.

        It was only when amwricans turned their backs on sub-standard american cars in favor of better japanese models that Ford and GM realised that they could no longer rip off their fellow americans with ‘buy american’ sub-standard vehicles.

        I don’t know Japan, but having lived here in Germany for quite a few years now, I can safely say that germans do not mostly by german cars because they are german. Here, as in a few american car forums I read, american cars have a reputation for inefficiency and unreliability. Even when they change, as they indeed have, it takes years for the reputation to change too.

        There are plenty of american, other european and asian cars on rhe road here, and quite a few rednecks too 😉

        1. Stimpacker says:

          Meaningless argument. How do you define American made car?

          I bought a lot of GM cars. My last GM car was made in Australia with the engine made in Mexico. It is an American brand but it sure isn’t made in America.

          Let’s look at the Hyundai Sonata. It is designed in California and made in Alabama. Is it an American product? Some say yes because it supports American jobs but some say no because the profits go to a foreign brand.

          Back to Tesla. It’s definitely American. So we should all scream at our politicians for finding the stupidest excuse to block sales.

        2. John Hansen says:

          Hi David, supporting your neighbors is not “dumb nationalism”. Do you like buying produce grown by local farmers? Is that “dumb nationalism”? Of course it isn’t, it’s just good sense.

          What’s dumb is relying on 30 year old stereotypes of American vehicles. What you said about American cars was absolutely true in the 1980s, but it certainly isn’t true about cars produced in the last decade. Unfortunately, many people (yourself included) cling to old stereotypes. American cars are very reliable, generally beating out German cars and coming in very close behind Japanese cars.

          And yes, Germans do in fact predominantly buy German cars. Here is a link to the top ten cars sold in Germany in 2012. Only two are foreign owned brands. http://www.kfz-auskunft.de/kfz/zulassungszahlen_2012_1.html

          Finally, the reputation of American cars as being inefficient is completely based on fleet averages, wherein the average for American automakers includes a lot more trucks. When compared segment by segment, American cars are frequently more efficient than foreign cars.

          We may live in a “global” economy, but citizens of all of the world’s manufacturing superpowers (including Korea, Germany, China, and Japan) heavily favor their own national brands… except for in America. America is the least Xenophobic country in the world. It’s nice to be a role model for the world, but it hurts our competitiveness, and hurts our working class. If you have a choice between an American car and an equivalent foreign car, it is in your own self-interest (and civic interest) to buy American.

          1. jmac says:

            John Hansen seems to have a pretty good grip on things.

            Having lived in Germany for about 3 years and having traveled all over Western Europe numerous times, I would say John’s assessment is basically dead on, except perhaps for the period directly after WWII, say up until about 1960 or so.

            Once Europeans rebuilt their automobile industries, preference for national brands re-established itself.

            And by the early 1970’s the U.S. was importing automobiles like crazy from both Japan and Germany. I know because I used to clean the rust prevention shipping cosmoline off Toyota Corollas in the early 70’s for $5 a car.

            That was my Saturday job for extra money.

            I don’t have anything against Americans who want to buy American Made.

            Japan has been especially persistent in denying foreign brands access to the Japanese market

            I hope I am wrong, but I do not think Tesla will out perform in either Japan or Germany.

            I see stubborn resistance from two peoples who perceive themselves as technologically superior to everyone else, and who really deep down inside, believe it.

  2. Anon says:

    Thats what Ford gets for taking the “E” model name from Elon. TM Model “Y” truck will also have more US content than their F-150…

  3. The Tesla Model S (2014) is only 50% sourced in North America. It has aways to move up the list to pass the current leader at 80%.

    1. JakeY says:

      Did you read the article? It says essentially the same thing, except that the Model S will get a 40% boost simply from making battery cells in the US (currently it’s made in Japan):
      “Today, Tesla claims that its electric sedan has about 55% American- and Canadian-made content…After the Gigafactory is built, and thanks to Tesla’s proposed efforts to source Gigafactory materials from the U.S., about 90% of Model S content could come from the U.S”

      1. kdawg says:

        I wonder what the US content of the 2015 Volt is? When I got my 2013 Volt, the only foreign parts were the transmission from Japan, and the battery cells from Korea. Now that the battery cells are made in Michigan, it could be as high as 83%.

        1. Mikael says:

          I’m assuming the materials need to be from the US too to count.

          1. kdawg says:

            I don’t think it goes down to raw materials. Otherwise they would have to trace where all the steel comes from for foreign cars (and a lot of steel comes from the US).

        2. Taser54 says:

          Considering that the Gigafactory is > 18 months from earliest operation, perhaps this discussion is premature?

  4. Spec says:

    It took a South African to make the most American Automobile.

    Go Figure.

    F you, GM, Ford, and Chrysler.

    1. kdawg says:

      Elon Musk has been a US Citizen since 2002, 1 year before Tesla Motors was founded.

      1. Mikael says:

        And a canadian before that. Citizenships don’t change your nationality though. If he would go get an saudiarabian or chinese citizenship too it would still not make him chinese or arabic.
        And looking at heritage he’s rather Canadian/British.

        1. kdawg says:

          I see him as a fellow American.

        2. MDEV says:

          Well what are you? if you are not a native American according to your definition you are an Alien with Citizenship or if you are 2nd or 3rd generation it does no matter you are an Alien. I have a Citizenship and I am an American like Elon and you know what way more American than you.

          1. kdawg says:

            I think he meant to say “ethnicity” not “nationality”.. because nationality changes w/your citizenship.

            The US is very diverse ethnically, yet we are all American citizens.. That is our nationality.

  5. IDK says:

    I wonder how long this will last if rumor that Tesla are in talks with South Korea carbon fiber maker GS Caltex. If so possible carbon fiber for the Tesla Model 3 made outside of U.S.

    1. TomArt says:

      That will depend on where it will be made, assuming that Tesla goes with it – and I doubt that the Model III will have it, but it’s possible. I’m sure that supply would be an issue, and not many companies would be willing to commit to the volumes Tesla projects, so they’ll probably have to bring that stateside, just like they are with batteries.

      1. IDK says:

        Agreed. The talks at the end of this month (maybe this week?) falls in line with the gigafactory getting up and running and the new Tesla Model 3 estimated production date. BMW i3 uses carbon fiber, it appears Tesla might be also looking at that route. Steel frame and carbon fiber body?

    2. Mikael says:

      Carbon fiber roadster? 🙂 If the batteries improves too then maybe it’s possible to make an enough light weight roadster to be able to give it racing performance and not be heavy and sluggish.

      It would be interesting to see if they could do a sports car able to compete in handling and performance with the current leaders of the pack.

  6. Priusmaniac says:

    That’s of no interest at all to Belgians, what is of interest is the final sticker price that make it affordable or not, on the road or not. If tomorrow the can make a copy in Bolivia or South Africa at half the price that would be even better. We need affordable electric cars on the road not nationalist cars especially if that was to make it more expensive and thus even less on the roads.

    1. Rob Stark says:

      Model S is not a nationalist car. It can’t be because cars don’t have ideologies.

      Tesla is not a nationalist company. It hires the best people from all over the world. The CEO was born in South Africa. VP of Manufacturing was born in France. CFO was born in India. VP of Supply Chain was born in Sweden.VP of World Wide Sales was born in France.Chief Information Officer was born in India.

      Elon Musk has stated that Tesla is agnostic when it comes sourcing parts and their national origin. They don’t care; it is about value.

      Car brand nationalism is a consumer phenomenon in the countries that mass produce vehicles. Sometimes it is stroked in marketing campaigns in domestic markets but Tesla does not do any advertising.

      This happens everywhere from Germany to Japan to China to the US. This site is read mostly by Americans so that viewpoint is stressed here but has nothing to do with Tesla.

      BTW I doubt most Belgians would pay 30k-70k Euros for a car made in a third world country with no history of auto manufacture. These are not shoes or mobile phones. Safety and trust in the manufacture is very important.

      1. lzl says:

        ….The VP of Engineering is British.

      2. lzl says:

        Musk’s predecessor was an Israeli…

  7. Surya says:

    “But one new American automaker soon may be poised to become more red, white, and blue than any other manufacturer in the world: electric-car maker Tesla Motors.”
    Red white and blue? That’s France, right?

    1. TomArt says:

      haha – no, if it was France, it would be “blue, white and red”…

  8. Rain Power says:

    Would it be an idea to boost the quality by adding lots of German parts?

  9. kdawg says:

    OT: Tesla stock may close at a new all-time high today(8/25). It’s above $262/share again.

  10. Nix says:

    There should be a new figure, that includes the projected US energy vs. foreign energy that will be consumed over the life of the vehicle. We still import roughly about a third of our crude oil, compared to almost all of our electricity coming from US sources.

    Adding in where the energy comes from would further show how much better a Tesla with a US built Giga-factory battery would support the US than a gas guzzling F150.

  11. EV says:

    Well just 1 Tesla is better than every car ever produced on this planet so…