I also was dismayed by the bashing of American car manufacturers in a recent column and letters. Everyone has been decrying the large SUVs and trucks. First, why were the Big Three building all those? Simple: That was the best source of sales! A few years ago, GM had to convert one of its plants in Texas to truck production to keep up with demand.
Second is the matter of quality. I have been driving for 53 years, have owned more than 70 cars and trucks, and only three were foriegn, bought used. In comparing cars, one must compare years of production, and these cars, two Japanese and one German, were no better or worse than any American cars of the era. They were smaller and got better gas mileage, but the ride and comfort offset that slight advantage.
I usually don’t keep cars much over 100,000 miles as I want something different after that length of time. However, I have known a number of people who have driven American cars to very high mileage, 175,000, 250,000 etc. My daughter just sold her ‘96 Suburban, with over 180,000 miles and the car was still going strong, with still a perfectly operating engine.
Lastly, the subject of mileage. My wife drives an ‘05 Cadillac DeVille. Yes, a large car by today’s standards, but one that allowed us to fit our three grandchildren at one time, in car seats, with shoulder belts in the back, which was impossible in most foriegn cars. In regular driving, she averages over 20 mpg, and yielded over 26 mpg on a trip to California, during bad weather, with many delays. This car replaced a 2000 Impala, which gave 22 mpg average in regular driving and as high as 31 on the road. In comfort! Would I buy a foriegn car? Never!
F.L. “Pat” Jacobs