Tesla has sneaked its way to the top of the list of the most American-made cars.

Now the electric automaker has two of the top three vehicles in Cars.com’s American Made-Index.

I often find that many people forget that Tesla is an American automaker for better or worse.

It’s not only an American automaker, but its vehicles made in the US are also more American-made than most due to Tesla’s vertical integration approach, which results in building a lot of parts itself.

The main thing that has been holding it back to me among the most-American-made vehicles has been the battery cells, which for Model S and Model X were coming from Japan.

But now with Model 3 and Model Y, the battery cells are coming from Nevada, where Tesla has a factory in partnership with Panasonic.

It has now resulted in Tesla Model 3 becoming the No. 1 most-American-made car in Cars.com’s American Made-Index:

Rank Make/Model U.S. Assembly Location(s)
1. Tesla Model 3 Fremont, Calif.
2. Ford Mustang Flat Rock, Mich. 
3. Tesla Model Y Fremont, Calif.
4. Jeep Cherokee Belvidere, Ill.
5. Chevrolet Corvette Bowling Green, Ky.
6. Honda Ridgeline Lincoln, Ala.
7. Honda Odyssey Lincoln, Ala
8. Honda Pilot Lincoln, Ala.
9. Honda Passport Lincoln, Ala.
10. Toyota Tundra San Antonio

It’s the first time that an all-electric vehicle takes the top spot, and as you can see, Model Y is now also on the list.

Kelsey Mays, assistant managing editor and AMI’s lead researcher, commented:

“Tesla has now cemented itself firmly on Cars.com’s American Made-Index, with the Model 3 and the Model Y taking the No. 1 and No. 3 spots, respectively. The 2021 AMI arrives against a backdrop of scarce inventory amid a microchip shortage and heightened consumer demand. Despite this, there remains a high consumer focus on buying American-made vehicles as the economy is still emerging from the effects of the pandemic. For those interested in making the biggest impact here, the index gives shoppers a way to purchase the most American-made vehicle.” 

To be fair, the index is not perfect since it is based on criteria ranging from US factory jobs and manufacturing plants to parts sourcing, but that information is often hard to get.

Electrek‘s take

Again, the index is probably not perfect due to the fact that some of the information needed to make it is opaque.

But I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s mostly true due to the fact Tesla is going pretty crazy about vertical integration.

In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Tesla’s vehicles coming out of Gigafactory Texas would rank even higher – though maybe not at first.

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