Going from domestic to foreign?

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May 26, 2007
West Michigan
Gentlemen, I am considering buying a new truck in another year or so. I've seen many a thread on here and elsewhere stating "I'll never buy another Ford/GM/Chrysler product again" Just finished reading a thread about the Cruze water pump issue. While it is a somewhat minor issue, it still shouldn't happen. The thing is, my Dakota has 77,000 miles on it now and has NEVER, NEVER been to the dealer or elsewhere for a repair. I've maintained it religiously as per the owners manual and that is it! So, my question is, how many of you have actually made the jump to a foreign name plate from one of the "big 3" (or is it 2.5 now?) Would you be willing to explain the circumstance's surrounding your decision? Are new domestic vehicle's really that bad? I think we've all heard about the poor quality control issue's from Chrysler, yet I look at what a good truck my Dakota has been. I'm not at all brand loyal and a new truck would be a regular cab 1/2 ton short box 2wd with a V-6 engine (not a Ford eco-boost) to include the foreign name plates.
There's a difference between foreign and domestic cars vs trucks. For cars, some foreign brands are considered better, however considering all the recalls that Toyota has had recently, some people may want to rethink that, but it takes a long while for the market to change. For trucks, domestics have been favored for a long time over foreign. Also low end cars tend to have a lot more problems than higher profit vehicles. Basically domestics have focused on trucks where most of their profits are and have mostly ignored cars which they have to make and sell in order to satisfy CAFE. So that's why you shouldn't be surprised that domestic cars get a bad rap.
I've heard about problems with every brand, I've owned mostly Chrysler and GM products and haven't had any major issues with either.

I buy what I like, take care of them and they've always treated me well. At the moment I drive a GM, and it's been nothing but oil changes so far.
I like american although i own two Hyundai Santa Fe's (made in America) and they are great vehicles both are v6 and seem to have more power than the others i love their warranty 10 years 100,000 miles only problem now is they are not cheap anymore. My wife has had a Mercedes and a BMW and both had issues. Being in the engine business i see it all and i still like domestic vehicles they run well and are usually cheaper to fix. We also has a range rover and that was by far the worst one ever and it was top of the line, total junk.
Taking European vehicles out of my mix as I have never owned one and have only driven friends/families vehicles. These folks haven't had the best success with the Euro cars. But, great to drive!

My best success has been with HonYotaSanZda. No lie! Chrysler...the worst for repairs. I always had to work on the Mopars waaaaaay tooooo much. We had 4 of them and many others in our circle(family/friends) feel the same way. But, I also liked driving most Chrysler products as much as any vehicle. I like their overall feel, comfort... and well, soul!

GM has been the best for us in the domestic cars. Although today(right now), I think they're all close. They're all great and/but, they all have their quirks!

It isn't good vs bad anymore. It's good vs better! Some of the more reliable vehicles are the ones that I dislike driving the most(Toyota). And some of the least reliable vehicles(Chrysler) are the ones that have the most soul! Honda, Mazda, Nissan too!
It's a mixed bag!

If I could build my own vehicle, I'd want something along the lines of...

...German body structure & rust prevention, smooth/quiet Honda/Mazda 4 cyl engine & MPG, Mercedes transmission, Euro suspension, Buick quiet, Subaru outward visibility, VW backseat room, Lexus quality/reliability, Cadillac/Lexus/Lincoln comfort, IDK who's infotainment system???

Something like that^^^ Just a starting place! In other words, I want the most repair/quirk free vehicle that I can keep almost forever! All in a $25K FWD mid size car.
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I only buy domestics because parts are more available and cheaper for the most part. As far as Chrysler goes, they had some issues with some cars, but my 2010 Challenger has been flawless and also gets better mileage than the EPA estimate. My Silverado has been flawless too, but in all fairness it only has 13K miles on it. I only use it when I need a truck (I know, first world issues).
My experience with Chrysler goes back to the 60's through the '00s. Just too many problems regardless that there are those who don't have issues with theirs.

Including Jeep, our circle of family/friends have too many issues(mainly electrical and tranny) with Chrysler products. And way too many tranny issues with RAM.

And laughably, almost none with their Toyota's in waaaaay over 200K miles. This has put a sour taste in the mouths of these folks including myself.

No vehicles are perfect and yes, Toyota has their problems too!

And too, I do know folks that have put on 200K+ with their Chrysler minivans with very good success and very happy!
I personally love driving Chrysler/Dodge minivans.

But, I'd hate this subject to turn into a battle between the brands.

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The line between "domestic" and "foreign" is extremely fuzzy. I prefer to purchase a vehicle that suits our needs and budget at the time I'm ready to purchase.

The majority of our vehicles over the years have been (trouble free) Chrysler products (Jeep and Dodge). However we currently have a Subaru, 2 Dodges and a Buick. We recently had a Hyundai, and in the past I've owned a couple of other GM products as well.

I think the worst thing you can do is search internet forums for reliability data. The vast majority of vehicle owners don't frequent forums, and most forums are filled with opinions rather than facts.
I believe that the differences between car companies come down to engineering, company policies, training and how the company works with their vendors.

I believe that little(less & less) has to do with the production line and blaming the assembly worker anymore. Though, they'll always be the ones to blame in the eyes of others in the company. Those finger pointers and those who just stumbled through the door collecting a paycheck, all while trying and succeeding, to make others look bad in order to make themselves(and their useless lives) look better!

We know who they are!
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As stated the Japanese are getting out of the V-6 engine game, but all the American manufacturers have recently introduced new standard V-6 engines. Here are the stats on the base engines for the big 3.

2015 Ford F-150 3.5L: 283 hp/ 255 ft lbs torque
2015 Chevy Silverado 4.3L: 285 hp/ 305 ft lbs torque
2015 Ram 1500 3.6L: 305 hp/269 ft lbs torque

Being a GM guy I'd opt for the Chevy/GMC in standard V-6 trim. Also, I like the higher torque output.

As for reliability I doubt there's very much difference. All the domestics know how to build a quality truck. Last time I noticed there were service departments at every brand of dealer parked full of vehicles with a problem.
Any car from any maker can have its problems. When I buy a truck it is always a Ford, and have never had any issues. But when I read the F150 forum I belong to, I see some real nightmares. Trouble with a lot of forums is that the only folks on them are the ones complaining about problems. I have had many makes of cars, the worst being a 97 Toyota. So you never know.
Used to be domestic had cheaper parts. Might need replacing more often, but it could be done cheaply. Not sure if that is true anymore, not when the Tundra hasn't changed for eight years. And everyone is chasing mpg, towing and cheapness in assembly/market share. Probably all the same now, although domestics make more and thus ought to be cheaper used, and ultimately have more parts in the boneyards.

What is wrong with the Dakota?
Originally Posted By: HM12460
The thing is, my Dakota has 77,000 miles on it now and has NEVER, NEVER been to the dealer or elsewhere for a repair.

... You haven't given it enough time to give it a problem. 77,000 miles sounds like you either work 5 miles from home or only on the weekends. I wish my car had 77k miles, it wouldn't have needed any repairs either since the only 3 real repairs it's had were AFTER 77k miles (alternator, starter, and flywheel). You still have a newish truck and it should not need any repairs at your mileage, any vehicle shouldn't need repairs at that mileage.
While researching for my wife's new(ish) Chrysler, I ran across a website for Consumer Complaints.

Oh no.....

It was a terrible car. The consumer complaints were hideous! "It lost power, brakes failed, it lost control above 55 mph in winter driving conditions.....etc..."

Not that it mattered. The wife was set on that car. It had all the geegaws, doo-dads, and a shiny touch screen that she wanted at significantly less than anything else at that class and the 3.6 felt as strong/stronger than her 2.4 Turbo.

Then, just for grins and ha-has, I looked up the supposedly "reliable" foreign cars like the Camry and Accord.

Oh no! They are terrible cars. They lose power, brakes failed, they lost control above 55mph in winter weather, they have uncontrolled acceleration....etc...

Most drivers are just bad at driving and maintaining their vehicles. Buy what you like and take care of it. It'll take care of you.
You do realize the tundra has more domestic content than the f-150, right?

Anyway, I wouldn't put much stock in brand reputation, especially of the " my brother in law" type especially for a pickup truck, where the competition is cutthroat and the customers knowledgeable and demanding.

Toyota and Honda have proven that they are as sociopathic as gm ever dreamed of being.

PS Ford is unique in that they allow any dealer to sell and advertise extended factory warranties over the web. I like the 7 yr 100k "basic" warranty for under $800 bucks. $50 deductible.
Originally Posted By: jimbrewer
You do realize the tundra has more domestic content than the f-150, right?

AFAIK they both have 75% unless that changed for 2015? Toyota states that "no truck has more American content than the Tundra" which is technically correct. The F-150 has the same percentage, not more.

The other two are significantly less.
1966 Dodge Dart with 273 cu. in. engine.Special ordered with front disc brakes,four-speed transmission,modified suspension. Hood was over an inch higher than the fender at one place due to sheet metal damage.. Wiring bundle did not have the wiring for back-up lights. Back up switch was cross-threaded into the transmission and leaked oil. HVAC duct work was screwed up.Alignment was not even close. Ball joints had to be replaced. Instruments jiggled all over on anything but smooth roads. Trunk leaked.The vehicle was a disaster. Traded that pos in on a 1967 Toyota Corona Zero build problems.Learned from Toyota dealer that Chrysler Corp had to replace Dart engine under the 50,000 mile, five year warranty. No more Chrysler Corp anything for me, ever.Hamtramck POS.
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