So far I have yet to read a single new, or original counter argument in this or any of the other Toyota threads, which of course resort to import-bashing.
Let's stop the train right this second. For starters, and I am simply going to state this plainly: WW2 ended 70 years ago. I am assuming that none of those making the anti-import comments are old enough to have actually participated in that conflict. So I'll just leave that comment there.
Secondly, we are talking about machines. Man-made machines. A machine is made out of plastic, metal, glass, and countless other materials mined out of the earth from all over the planet. Then they are put together likewise all over the planet. A recent report actually showed that in the case of some Japanese car makers, we are actually exporting more of those cars, made in the US, than what we import from Japan. Yes - you read that correctly. But nevertheless, a machine doesn't care about its nationality. It does its job and some do their jobs better than others. So if one brand is comprised of machines that gives a higher level of satisfaction and reliability... does it matter what nationality it happens to be?
I guess I'm just really tired of the majority of these comments that have nothing to do with the cars and everything to do with this perceived nationalism. Give credit for where credit is due and again - if you DO NOT LIKE Toyotas or imported brand products, then you as an individual have the freedom to purchase whatever product you choose. So be it. Let others make their own choices as well, and leave well enough alone.
Where are all the 70's era Toyotas? 80 percent? We had Celicas all over my city then. My family had 2 alone.
How come the # one vehicle sold in America for over 2 decades has been a Ford F series truck? Does that mean we should all have one in our drive? Doesn't mean it is for all. Same with a Camry. It may be priced at a middle segment that buys a commuter or general car. Gas costs are high, and cheap cars fuel wise are going to sell. But I never buy into one size fits all.
Personally my favorite vehicle is a Crossover today. Very versatile, nice room, great for active families, and I get a low 22 MPG. However if I had a very long daily commute, I would buy basic transportation, a cheap new vehicle, and rack up the miles. Something you barely have to look under the hood much or care if it gets dinged up in a lot or shopping. If it depreciates rapidly, so what. Put fuel in it and wash once a week.
Using the "practical" word is not always the most fun. Weekends and evenings, I am out of the daily beater. If you really are into surveys, calculate how many cram on the bus or train in major cities. Do they love the experience? Must be the case on statistics alone. Doesn't mean it's desirable or necessarily enjoyable. Hope that point sinks in.
Where a product is assembled and who turns the wrenches is not going to make an import a domestic. It is built exactly to the manufacturer's specs, and the big profits return to where the corporate country is based. That can apply with domestics just as easily. And actually that is not the debate; it's more on quality concerns than an economic debate. If a family chooses to switch from Toyota over recalls and quality, it has nothing to do with if the manufacturer has some states building them here.
Here's another example... We switched to new Mazdas as we have issues with Toyota quality. That brand is not a Toyota, so are we to not comment? Personally I don't care where it's actually built... only that it is not going to have major issues. We have imports and domestics in our drive. If any of them hit the dealership shop too often, we are not buying them again or for a long while.
Why would we need any "new" arguments about Toyota? The "old" arguments are pretty damning: Oil sludging, massive recalls, poor safety record, massive drop in build quality and lack of consideration for customers.
Just last week a comparison of mid-sized SUV's ranked Toyota dead last because of cheap build quality, and the Corolla has ranked last in every comparison I've read for the past three years.
Yes, people are free to buy them. I just don't know why any informed buyer would.
Today I checked the major components of my 145,000 mile GMC truck for the Japanese content you speak of.
First the frame; no holes rusted through it anywhere. Not Japanese manufactured.
Next the transmission; the easy to check fluid is cherry red, it only shifts when it is supposed to, and has never been re-built or replaced. Not a Japanese design.
Lastly the engine; oil is at the full mark, as always, and is so clean it's almost transparent. It has also never needed to be re-built or replaced. Also not a Japanese product.
I checked my 260,000+ Tacoma out today as well. What do you know. It still runs and drives like new. Clearly not an American design.
As far as the worn-out "where it's made" debate.... one more time:
Yes - it does in fact matter where something is made. Take a trip to any number of the Japanese, Korean, or German manufacturing plants all across the US: Ask any of the American workers on those lines if the paychecks they get count. Simple! Who cares if the money ultimately goes back to corporate? If that's a big deal, then explain why? What do you think the money gets used for? Why - they build new plants, and some of those plants are in the US. So yep - the money goes back to corporate, as it should, and that same corporation employs a lot of American workers. Ta-da!
As far as making these large compound statements about sludging, recalls, and whatever, yes - we all are well-aware that yep, Toyota, just like EVERY OTHER auto manufacture has had recalls as well as other issues. Yes - there was a family of Toyota engines that even had some occasional sludging problems, which were long-ago addressed. What matters is when at the end of the day, when those recalls and issues are compiled in with the overall reliability ratings, Toyota STILL ranks as the most reliable brand. Why? Because all of those other brands ALSO had issues - but rather had MORE issues that Toyota. So keep right on mentioning those recalls, sludging issues, and whatever all you want. Whatever point that was trying to make, actually reinforces why Toyota is still coming out ahead.
J.D Power's 2013 quality survey lists GMC as better than all Toyota brands, including Lexus. How's that for a counter-argument.
Also, are you trying to imply that people dislike Toyota because of WWII?
Consider yourself fortunate you have a 1996 (truck). The problem is that this is a 2003 review and many experienced engine sludging. Your comments do not make a 2003 Camry owner feel great who lost an engine with no warning.
I can go back in time and rave about a vehicle I bought 20 years ago. Sure it was fine. But this one had issues.
You many be a big fan of outsourcing. See http://voices.yahoo.com/outsourcing-american-jobs-hurts-us-1619717.html as perhaps it will not affect you. But many thousands are out of work.
My biggest issue is people that use the word "Toyota" or "Ford" or "Nissan" and use the sweep of the brush to cover all models and all years. I have had good cars one decade and abysmal the next. Like now. If my engine block has a poor design with cold spots in the block, how does that compare to the former great engine? If you make a high mileage claim, indicate the year and model, not just a brand. I would like to see some 2007 up extreme high mileage models on here with minimal issues. Not one you bought 15 or 20 years ago. I am sorry we traded our older ones in. And I am sure we are not alone.