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4/16/2011

It could be argued that truck buyers care more about “how American” their vehicles are compared to other segments. For 2011, Dodge and Toyota make the trucks, van, and SUV that form the top of a list documenting vehicles that have the highest North American parts content.

Thanks to the American Automobile Labeling Act, the NHTSA issues a report every year that lists vehicles according to the amount parts that are derived from the U.S. and Canada. Percentages can change from year-to-year, but for 2011, the now-dead Ford Explorer Sport Trac tops the list for trucks, vans, SUVs, and cars with a full 90 percent of its parts from North America. We’ve omitted that vehicle, along with the defunct Mercury Mountaineer and outgoing Ford Explorer — each at 85 percent — before collecting the top performers in each segment. Check out the top cars in the related post also on this site.

Top Trucks

The midsize Dodge Dakota, at 84 percent, has just a bit more North American content than the full-size Toyota Tundra, at 80 percent.
The Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon come in third, with 75 percent. For those who are curious, the 2011 report shows the Ram truck at 70 percent, the Chevrolet Silverado at 61 percent, and the Ford F-Series at 60 percent.

Top SUVs

Toyota’s large Sequoia SUV and Dodge’s midsize Nitro SUV have the highest North American parts content of any currently made SUV, according to the 2011 report, at 80 percent each. The four-door Jeep Wrangler has 79 percent North American content, actually one percent higher than the two-door model. The Jeep Liberty — made alongside the Dodge Nitro — is listed at 78 percent. The Buick Enclave has the highest content from the U.S. and Canada among luxury SUVs, at 75 percent, followed by the Acura RDX at 70 percent.

Top Vans/Minivans

The Dodge Grand Caravan has a higher North American parts content than any van or minivan, at 82 percent, even higher than the Chrysler Town & Country, which is at 80 percent. GMC’s Savana slips in at 80 percent, followed by the Toyota Sienna and Honda Odyssey at 75 percent. Not surprisingly, the Ford Transit Connect has 10 percent North American parts content, as it is manufactured primarily in Turkey. The Kia Sedona is shown at 7 percent while the Mazda5 minivan has, well, 5 percent North American parts content, not a surprise, since the vehicles are made in South Korea and Japan, respectively.

Do you think that a vehicle’s North American parts content is more important for a truck or SUV than a car? How much would that affect your vehicle purchasing decision? Tell us in the comments section below.

 

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Shouldn't it be Ram Dakota, not Dodge Dakota? I'm so cornfused by the new "Ram" Brand. :cool:
 

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Good news for that Dodge Dakota.... I think that's a great feedback for Dodge trucks. No one can deny that Dakotas are very fine trucks. I think one of the reasons why this truck is the top 1 on the list is by the rack and pinion steering feature. Think of other trucks that have that truck accessories.... can you tell any? Well, Dakota is the First to have this technology among all trucks.
 

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Shouldn't it be Ram Dakota, not Dodge Dakota? I'm so cornfused by the new "Ram" Brand. :cool:
If you'll look closely to the emblem of the dodge, you'll see that the animal there is a RAM.... that's why it is sometimes called as a RAM....


Anyways.... Good job for Dodge Dakota!!!
 

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August 20, 2011 Autos Insider | Chrysler to stop Dakota production | The Detroit News

Chrysler to stop Dakota production

Compact pickup’s end could lead to layoffs at plant in Warren




Chrysler Group LLC will end production of its Ram Dakota compact pickup Tuesday — a move that has already cost 39 temporary workers their jobs and could lead to more layoffs at the company's Warren Truck Plant.

"We're working through the numbers and will not have details until next week," said Chrysler spokeswoman Jodi Tinson.

However, the union believes the number could reach 150 or more.

"In most cases, if there are layoffs, those people would be redeployed to other Chrysler facilities," Tinson said.

The factory, which also builds the Ram 1500 pickup, is running two shifts and employs about 2,300 hourly workers.

Some workers at the plant were nervous about the future Friday.

"We're concerned," said Chrysler worker Peter Moceri. "We're wondering if we're getting another vehicle."

In May, Chrysler Group CEO Sergio Marchionne said the company plans to replace the body-on-frame Dakota with a car-based "lifestyle" vehicle for the Ram brand.

He said a decision had not yet been made about where to build it.

Product analyst Jim Hall of 2953 Analytics LLP said it was time to pull the plug on the aging truck.

"There was a time there when it was bringing buyers in that would have not bought a Ram," he said.

"The tooling was paid off, but the volumes got sub-critical."

In 2000, Chrysler sold more than 177,000 Dakotas. Last year, it barely sold 13,000.

The compact pickup segment represents less than 5 percent of total industry sales.

Ford Motor Co. plans to end production of its Ford Ranger compact pickup at the end of this year.
 
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