Who makes better cars: U.S. or Asia?

Agree or disagree: The quality of U.S. cars has improved significantly?

Slightly more Americans now say the United States makes better-quality vehicles than Asia does, the Associated Press is reporting.

Thirty-eight percent said U.S. cars are best, while 33 percent preferred autos made by Asian companies, according to an Associated Press-GfK Poll.

The survey suggests those numbers are largely fueled by a plunge in Toyota’s reputation and an upsurge in Ford’s, AP writes. The poll was conducted in March, as Toyota was being roiled by bad publicity over its recall of more than 8 million vehicles around the globe.

Still, the numbers have changed substantially. When the same question was asked in a December 2006 AP-AOL poll, 46 percent said Asian countries made superior cars, AP reports. Jjust 29 percent preferred American vehicles.

So, what do you make of this? Have American automakers turned the corner for the long haul?

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter.

45 comments Add your comment

ManOfTeal

April 21st, 2010
7:59 am

Interesting since Forbes just relased the top 8 worst made new cars on the planet and they were ALL American made. One is made by Ford, six are made by GM, and one is made by Chrysler.

Here’s the article:http://www.forbes.com/2010/04/07/worst-made-cars-lifestyle-vehicles-gm-ford-chrysler.html

Ron

April 21st, 2010
8:36 am

This is not the correct comparison. Flash. Most (like almost all) Asian cars are manufactured in America. Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, Nissan and etc. all produce their North American cars in America. Their suppliers are American suppliers.

So, Henry, the real question is… Who manages the production of cars better? American managers or Asian managers. Now before you answer keep in mind that Asian auto manufacturers employee American workers, supervisors and line managers in their American plants. But senior management and leadership comes from the Asian parent companies.

(Also, you are correct the poll is probably highly skewed because of recent publicity around Toyota. American consumers are so easily led down the path)

SocialismSux

April 21st, 2010
9:08 am

Just because the messiah has blessed American cars doesn’t make them a bit better than they ever were. I’ll keep my Toyota, thank you. Who do they think they’re kidding>

Producer

April 21st, 2010
9:09 am

Look at consumer reports. Foreign cars, especially Japanese, whether made there or here, are superior to the junk that is spewed out off of traditionally American (GM, Ford, Chrysler…) assembly lines.

Koz

April 21st, 2010
9:10 am

Nissan, owned 4, never had an issue – well I did hit a deer once, I guess that is an issue.

Joshua Barlowe

April 21st, 2010
9:23 am

HONDA.

People just don’t get what marketing is, do they? Ford is still JUNK. GM is still JUNK. They still won’t last as long as a Toyota or Honda.

Chris

April 21st, 2010
9:31 am

I’ll walk before I buy another Government Motors vehicle. If you can’t afford a German car, buy a Nissan.

woody

April 21st, 2010
9:33 am

Nissan Altima Consumer Report’s best family sedan.

Got the V6 it rocks and so do I.

Cindy

April 21st, 2010
9:33 am

This is and has been a hot debate for me for a few years, especially with the American carmakers receiving bailouts from the government, which caused and even greater decline in the american car value…..

We as owners are not able to get a bailout to get out of these cars that carry such negative equity. I can’t wait until I am able to get the hell out of this mess and yes I hate to see people loose their jobs but, (NEVER AGAIN), JAPANESE/GERMAN ALL THE WAY….

Connie

April 21st, 2010
9:43 am

Japanese designed cars are still head and shoulders above American cars. And always will be.

Anyone who thinks that a car built by UAW goons is going to be a decent car has been drinking the kool aid waaaaay too long.

Howard

April 21st, 2010
9:44 am

Couldn’t believe your column…oops, sorry you probably voted for Obama. Excpt for Ford, I wouldn’t buy GMC or Chrysler…not as long as Obama and the government owns it. We have had Toyota cars, have Honda van now which is great and VW Beetle convertible, which is great. Have owned Nissan cars which were great. GM or Chrysler?? They stink…just like their great benefactor!!! Why would I buy Ford?? They didn’t cave in and take a bribe! But if Obama gets this Stalinist finance reform, guess what company he and the regime will go after…Ford! And I’m not convinced the demonization of Toyota was not some Obama plot to take them off the top perch. There are still more Toyota buyers out there than you think. I’d buy Toyota right now today over GM or Chrysler!!!!!

Connie

April 21st, 2010
9:46 am

The person above who said that American car companies build junk is absolutely correct. Marketing must still work, since only a total idiot would buy an American car made by union morons.

Connie

April 21st, 2010
9:48 am

I agree 100% with Howard. and the words Obama and Stalin definitely go together!

WHAT?

April 21st, 2010
9:48 am

Read consumer reports and you will find the truth. Asian vehicles are way better than American and European vehicles.

Fred

April 21st, 2010
9:56 am

I have to agree with Connie and Howard, until the US Government is no longer owns any portion of GM, I will NOT Consider one. I own a Mercedes and a Honda and although the Germans build a nicer car, the Asians build a better car. BUT…..watch out world, her comes Ford, they appear to have there act together and I will consider them on my next purchase.

Bacchus

April 21st, 2010
9:57 am

Japanese, German, even Korean engineered sedans exceed quality of anything that GM or Ford have given us in recent years. Dodge Nitro, Chrysler PT Cruiser, Chevy Aveo, Ford Fusion? They’ve become the laughing stock of our auto industry and the only people who buy them have names like Avis, Thrifty, or Budget.

Connie

April 21st, 2010
9:57 am

Okay, my last input here, then I’m gone. Here it is: Labor unions suck. The UAW sucks more than any of them. Only a complete idiot would buy an American car made by a UAW dummy.

The UAW can kiss my azz.

?

April 21st, 2010
10:00 am

Enter your comments here

youtellm

April 21st, 2010
10:00 am

LOL what a bunch of tards, people act like U.S. cars started becoming junk once Obama got elected. U.S. cars have been junk for decades!!! You people look stupid adding politics in this. Post on your experience with these cars..Stay on topic!!

Chinese made cars will be to market soon. They’ve made soooo much money with the outsourcing we’re doing with them, they decided they had money to play with in the car making business.

?

April 21st, 2010
10:01 am

Perhaps we ought look at the complaint rankings?

Cutty

April 21st, 2010
10:07 am

Picture this: Teabaggers yelling against socialism and communism as if they are the same, leave the rally and hop in their foreign made cars. Priceless.

The new Buick LaCrosse is great, as is the new Ford Taurus. I’ve narrowed my next car purchase. Something must be up since Buick is HUGE in China and Europe, and has been for years. Buy American you patriots.

tim

April 21st, 2010
10:08 am

The quality of American cars has improved but they still have a long way to go to catch up on gas mileage, engine performance, design, resale value, and backing their products when problems occur.

I always owned GM until I bought an Accord and I’ve never looked backed.
Consumers don’t really know how great a “foreign” car is until they have owned one.

My cousins own a Ford and Chevy dealership but my parents and sisters family and I all drive Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and Lexus. Nuff said.

Rodney Dangerfield

April 21st, 2010
10:11 am

I made the mistake of purchasing a Chrysler Town & Country minivan instead of the Honda Odyssey in 2008. After two break jobs, a set of new rotors, and a replaced AC hose in less than 40k miles, I realized my mistake.

Shocked

April 21st, 2010
10:13 am

Where is your american pride? I came to this country and became an AMERICAN, (from Europe). It hurts me to read, how you all write about your fellow country men/women. No wonder, we are in the mess we’re in. I always make sure I buy “made in the USA”, all the way, although it is getting harder.

CJ

April 21st, 2010
10:19 am

First of all, the U.S. Government has nothing to do with the performance of a U.S. automotive manufacturers. If it weren’t for the U.S. government, more than a million automotive jobs in the U.S. would have disappeared. That means more folks on public assistance programs (bigger tax drain). So I applaud the U.S. Government for trying to correct a sinking ship (automotive and financial institutions in the U.S.). That being said, I do not trust domestic auto manufacturers because they place money/profit over quality. I have worked in foreign and domestic automotive industries and I must say that the domestic products are getting better. However, the products still fall short of foreign manufacturing processes. Its really a philosophical difference (management and workers taking pride/ownership of product vs. getting a paycheck and keeping profits up). Therefore, domestic auto makers accountability is still questionable. I have owned a Chrysler vehicle and I practically LIVED in the Maintenance Repair shop. The Chrysler brakes, transmission, radiator went out under 10,000 miles. I now own two Nissans and I just love the performance and dependability regarding Nissan vehicles. Performance gets better as my Nissan ages (over 100,000 miles easily). Would I buy a Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Kia, or Hyundai over a Chrysler? GIVE me the Toyota and I’ll replace the braking system myself!! I’d rather get a skate board or walk than buy another Chrysler!! Chrysler products are nothing but JUNK on wheels.
Ford or GM? Maybe if the price is low enough. I think domestic dealerships should be realistic and under price foreign cars. Less quality should equal less money for consumers. As for German automobiles, they are ok. However, if you have money to waste or are trying to keep up appearances, go for it. Just remember that you better have BIG EURO MONEY when the vehicle needs major repairs. The repair bill can get real nasty for a German car.

woody

April 21st, 2010
10:20 am

Enter your comments here

Karl Marx

April 21st, 2010
10:21 am

Let’s see, GM and Ford closed their manufacturing plants in Georgia. KIA opened a plant in Georgia. As they say I did not abandon American car companies, American car companies abandoned me.

woody

April 21st, 2010
10:21 am

Nissan seems to winning here

KnightInATL

April 21st, 2010
10:22 am

Chevy makes the best pick-up trucks. BAR NONE.

Rickster

April 21st, 2010
10:31 am

Thank you, youtellm!

I was reading the blogs on here and just shook my big ole head in amazement at the diatribe and venom that is being spewed on this site this morning towards a man that is trying his best to bring this country out of a handbasket of hell, greed and deceit. What hatred there is in a country that is supossedly based on freedom, justice and equality more than any other country in the world! So sad…..

Anyway, I have purchased both american and asian vehicles over the course of my 30 plus years as an automotive consumer and what I’ve found to be the case is that the auto-makers of both coutries are driven by the bottom line in their efforts to produce a product that can only serve for “X” amount of years. The key to both markets is after-market service and upkeep. I will agree that, *as a whole*, the asian companies do have the right strategy in regards to quality parts and service, and a love for the product they produce, with american companies following sadly behind. Given that most people drive their vehicles like a “bat out of hell” speeding all over the country, and then expect it to perform just as it did the day they drove off the lot, without maintaining it with the recommended service suggested by the aotumaker. If you keep up with the recommended maintenance and slow your asses down, then maybe, just maybe, you can get the 200k -300k, or maybe enven 500k miles out of any vehicle you purchase and drive! Just a comment!

Acdawg

April 21st, 2010
10:35 am

“Buy American you patriots…..” That says it all…. Why send your money to corporations in Japan and Germany… Be a patriot and keep all the $$ in this country…. My 88 year old father fought against the Japs in WW2… To this day he would never buy a Japanese car… I drive A 2002 GMC and 2008 Cadillac CTS love em both… I hate Obama too but I still believe in buy American…

CJ

April 21st, 2010
10:42 am

Rickster,

I wish to say I agree 1,000 percent with your comments. And you large SUV and large pick up truck drivers need to remember that you DO NOT have a high performance Corvette and that the metro Atlanta freeway system is not the Atlanta Speedway. They and large semi-trucks should be regulated to dirt fields and gravel filled roads. The most rude drivers/bullies in the world by FAR. No wonder SUV and trucks flip all the time and are in the news for harming other drivers.

Jeffrey

April 21st, 2010
10:48 am

I love how people weave Obama into this debate. You nuts are obsessed over Obama. Come on, you lost the election. Get over it! Just think what we would be like with another Republican in office with Palin as his right-hand peep. LORD! That would be tragic. Your biggest fears are coming to fruition. The economy is turning around, employment is starting to come back, taxes for the majority of us are lower and we have Healthcare reform and Financial Services reform is right around the corner. Life is getting back to being oh so good!

?

April 21st, 2010
10:50 am

How is buying an inferior car because it’s ‘American’ any different than voting Republican because it’s ‘not liberal?’

cobra

April 21st, 2010
11:07 am

I hope all of you are so supportive of these Japanese cars will spend some time watching the History channel or Military channel maybe you will even see the Batan death march, Pearl Harbor, Iwo Jima and others. The best quality cars dollar for dollar are made by Ford Motor Company!! I was a Sales consultant for several years and I sold new and used American and Foreign, over the last 7 years Ford has made more strides in safety, creature comfort and overall quality than any other car IMHO!

Dave Perry

April 21st, 2010
11:09 am

Henry, this is just nonsense. Some American workers can build great cars if the cars are designed to be great, i.e., Ohio-made Hondas versus Alabama-made Hondas. Big difference in quality. The Ohio made vehicles compare extremely well to their Japanese made models for quality. As for the Alabama made vehicles, just ask Mercedes-Benz how that has worked out for them and then go to your local Honda dealer and take a real hard look at the vehicles made in Ohio versus Alabama. Is the workers? Is it management? Or is it leadership from the top? I vote for the later. Penny pinching and letting the accountants and bean counters run the show like GM and Chrysler have done for so many years is what has killed them.

pj

April 21st, 2010
11:14 am

Rich

April 21st, 2010
11:19 am

I’ll keep my McLaren mp4-12c and you can keep you Ford Fusion.

Ian N

April 21st, 2010
11:23 am

Ford all the way.
I’m sorry, but every last naysayer I’ve ever met regarding them haven’t even driven their cars in the last 2 years. If they had, they’d be shocked at how nice vehicles like the Fusion Hybrid really are. There is a reason why Ford are now the number one selling brand in the 27 Country European Union, and the number one rated car in customer satisfaction/quality in the USA.

By the way, I’m an ex-Honda Accord owner/fan saying this. Don’t get me wrong, Honda are fantastic too, but to say “Ford sucks” is being totally blind to the kind of great cars they are putting out NOW.

Fusion

April 21st, 2010
11:36 am

As far a quality is concerned, Ford has came along way in the last 5years, and is now equal to Honda and Toyota. If you dont think so you need to look at the new things that Ford is rolling out with the Ecoboost engines and the 6 speed transmissions. Also the person that said a Fusion is junk that only rental car companies buy is a complete idiot. The Fusion is a dependable quality car that is cost less than a Civic and is better quality I have one that gets 29mpg around town and 35-37mpg on the highway, i also paid 5000 dollars less for it than a guy i know that bought a civic. As far a charging less for American cars if you ever compare the new Taurus to a Accord it does cost less and you get more car for your money. I agree that the UAW needs to go that would save the American Auto makers alot of money, but how do we get them out???? Just my two cents worth

ManOfTeal

April 21st, 2010
11:54 am

American cars lack style….oh sure some look good on the outside but then look inside and you find cheap and ugly, with buttons in the dash as big as my hand. And they tend to creak and just don’t feel like any care at all was put into building or designing it.

A car should be sexy and streamlined, and stylish. America is still doing it wrong.

JH

April 21st, 2010
3:29 pm

My next vehicle is a Lexus GX460, as soon as dealerships can sell them again!
Toyota & Lexus for me!

T

April 21st, 2010
4:01 pm

They must have only polled people living in Detroit.

TnGelding

April 22nd, 2010
10:36 am

Asia, but the US is catching up. Buy a Kia Sorento! Mad in the USA! Made in Georgia! Get the best of both worlds.

PK

April 22nd, 2010
12:33 pm

I just turned in my Company Car Toyota Camry for a Ford Focus.
My toyota with 150k was more solid feeling than the brand new Ford.