Foreign or Domestic, Which Truck is Better?
Last week, a good friend called me and asked if I thought imports were higher quality than domestic vehicle manufacturers. He had been talking to a couple other friends, who told him domestic trucks can't compete when it comes to import standards. Upon pondering the question, it became clear to me the stigma domestic manufacturers have been stuck with has no merit.
I couldn't believe my friend let marketing hype control his own logic, especially considering he just sold his domestic truck that had 270,000 miles on it. With the exception of a transmission, a couple water pumps, and a couple alternators, the truck functioned as a reliable workhorse, regardless of the lack of maintenance on his part.
The idea that imports are better than domestic vehicles is a crock. OK, so everyone who's ever had a problem with a Ford, Chevy, or Dodge has found some excuse to jump on the "Domestics are junk" bandwagon. My first new vehicle was a Toyota truck, and I still suffer from a severe case of buyer's remorse. But that doesn't make it right to run around making ignorant or unjustified blanket claims about import vehicles.
As an editor, I have a duty to be fair in my evaluations, and as a person who genuinely wants to learn rather than convince others I am omnipotent, I have a strong desire to understand the benefits and quirks of each truck, and how it relates to its position in the consumer market.
Asia has made leaps and bounds in industrialization, just as we did many years ago. But this growth is not without some major repercussions. Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent. It covers a mere 8.6 percent of the Earth's total surface area. Of that area, only 29.4 percent of this land surface is home to almost 4 billion people. It contains more than 60 percent of the world's current human population.
These conditions, along with a poorly managed waste disposal system and a major lack of pollution control, the Asian industrial revolution is not without consequence. According to a report by NASA, Asia's industrial pollution has developed a 2-mile thick toxic cloud that, during spring and fall months, makes a 6,000-mile journey to infest Southern California's air. According to UN Environmental Group, Asian pollution is the cause of 800,000 premature deaths yearly.
However, in relation to these demographics, Asia's industrial toxins are no more to blame than the mass concentrations of pollutants emitted in the United States' during the Industrial Revolution.
In this modern age, we share the technology. Therefore, any vehicle manufacturer that can design a car for a specific class, does so knowing what that market consists of and what it would be comparable to. Toyota recalled 775,000 Tundra and Sequoia-like vehicles in 2005, and with reports that Toyota's new Tundra has cam-snapping issues, the recalls are not likely to stop anytime soon. It's only proof that all vehicle manufacturers will have some form of notorious problems, in relation to design, manufacturing, and market price.
Does that make Toyota trucks a ton a junk? No, it's all part of doing business. The only factor that would make one truck better than another is which one you personally like more. Basically, don't blindfold yourself with blanket statements of which product to buy. Take the time to check all of your options to get the best bang for your buck.