The Made In America Camry Story Most Miss
Cars.com’s most recent “Most American-made car” list is out, but most media reporting on the story miss the bigger picture. The Camry is not just the most American-made car by Cars.com’s methodology. What is equally important, or perhaps more important, is that the Camry supports about twice as many American workers in the U.S. than does the number two car, and more than four times the number of the most American-made vehicle built by GM.
According to Cars.com’s estimates, the Camry supports about 6,500 assembly plant workers in the US. That number does not include the workers who make parts for the Camry at the 270 supplier locations in the U.S. Cars.com estimates that the number of workers who support assembly line workers making parts is roughly 1.5 to one. Thus, a rough estimate of the workers whose jobs are related to the Toyota Camry is about 16,250. The most American-made GM product, the Chevy Traverse crossover, supports roughly 1,500 assembly plant workers and perhaps 3,750 workers overall.
Part of the reason for the Camry’s impact on America’s workforce is its sales success. The Camry is the top-selling car in America and has been for 14 years. The American-made index that Cars.com uses only calls a vehicle “American-made” if its parts content is over 75% U.S.-based. This year there are eight vehicles on the American-made list. Two are Toyotas, three are Hondas and three are GM vehicles. No trucks made the list, which is why the less than 75% U.S.-content Ford F-150 is not shown. No Fords or vehicles made by “Chrysler”, now called FCA US, make the American-made list. (More on page 2)
Toyota's U.S. operations are deeply rooted in the U.S. Toyota Motor Corp is a publicly traded U.S. company based in Plano Texas. It is traded under the symbol TM on the New York Stock Exchange. Jim Lentz is the CEO of Toyota North America. Bob Carter is Toyota's senior vice president overseeing automotive operations. The Sienna and Camry were designed in America and have American chief designers.