Fourth of July Special: Cars That Make Me Proud To Be An American

american-1.jpg

Happy Fourth of July to all you car buffs out there!

Since the Fourth of July is a celebration of America and all things American (except maybe gas prices), I’ve put together this little Fourth of July Special, an article dedicated to all American cars. I actually got the idea from Car and Driver, and you can see their article here. Anyway, this is compromised of what I believe are the current finest examples of the American automobile. Not all are in production, but those that aren’t will be. I chose these cars because they herald the new “era” of the Big Three, , who are just beginning to make cars that you actually want. So if you’re a car buff and you love your country, this might just make you proud to be an American again, and just in time for the Fourth of July. And if you aren’t American, these cars might just make you wish you were.

You might not agree with all the choices, and if there is a car you disagree with or if there is one you think should be on the list, any and all comments are welcome. Keep in mind that this is just my opinion of cars that have that good ol’ American feel- and make me proud to be an American.

Dodge Challenger

challenger.jpg

Dodge’s new all muscle car is sure a thing to be proud about. Retro styled in the classic Dodge way, the Challenger is big, heavy, and powerful. The long hood short deck formula, the humps over the wheels, and its square front and end make it instantly recognizable as an American muscle car. And yeah, it’s got that classic Hemi V-8.

Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 KR

gt500kr.jpg

Ford’s fifth generation Mustang is a great retro styled car, and the Shelby GT500 is better, but I like the GT500 KR the most. Not only is the best looking and the most vicious Cobra Mustang to ever come from Ford and Shelby, but it is also the most powerful and the most expensive stock Mustang made. It’s beastly 540 horsepower engine and 80 grand price is a classic example of sheer, undiluted excess- and it is everything a true, high-performance American Mustang should be.

Chevrolet Camaro

camaro1.jpg

Due to hit showrooms in 2010 is the Mustang’s most feared rival, the Chevy Camaro. Its production will complete the return of the Big Three muscle car set. When the Camaro was first released in 1967, the press asked Chevy what a Camaro was. To which Chevy officials responded, “It’s a small, vicious animal that eats Mustangs”. With a 400 horsepower V-8, I can’t wait till it comes out.

Update: 2010 Chevy Camaro 1LT Review

Chevrolet Malibu

maz20.jpg

I don’t much like the Malibu’s looks, but I can’t help but admire what it has accomplished. Far removed from the ugly predecessor, the new Malibu is a great family sedan that offers sharp looks, quality fit and finish, and an overall good package that has got the best of Toyota, Nissan, and Honda worried.

Cadillac CTS and CTS-V (and Coupe Versions)

maz4.jpg

The new CTS is just one example of the good things that are going on in GM. Completely redesigned, it easily competes with and bests the competitors from BMW, Mercedes, Lexus, and other luxury sedan brands. The CTS-V (pictured) is even better, offering more aggressive looks and a lot more power. It just may be the fastest sedan in history, and has got even such icons as BMW’s M3 and Mercedes’ C63 AMG running scared. The Coupe version is basically the same, only with a sportier profile.

Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

maz21.jpg

The Corvette is already the epitome of the American muscle car, and it offers the best bang for the buck of any car in the world. It’s one of the most revered sports cars in the world, and can compete with the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini at a mere fraction of their price. Apparently, that wasn’t good enough, so GM charged Chevy with making the most insane Corvette ever. The upcoming Corvette ZR1 is an absolute beast, with 638 raging horses powering it to 205 mph, making it the fastest car GM has ever built.

Saturn Sky Red Line

sat.jpg

It’s not often that you see an exciting Saturn, indeed, this is the first one. The Saturn Sky Red Line a is head-turning roadster that is one of GM’s best looking cars in many years. It not only outperforms most of the competition, but it also gets relatively good mileage as well, with 22/31 mpg.

Chevrolet Volt

maz22.jpg

GM used to be the largest car company in the world, with the most net profit, until Toyota came and knocked them off their perch. The main reason was because GM was dumb and made SUVs and elected not to make hybrids, while Toyota saw the long term investment and decided to make fuel efficient cars. GM is now finally making a serious effort to combat the Japanese manufacturers in the hybrid realm, and the Volt may be just the tool to do that. The basic idea is that it is a hybrid, and can travel for 40 miles without using a single drop of gas. Now, that’s great, but I pray GM doesn’t go ahead and make it $40,000, which Bob Lutz said might happen.

Pontiac Solstice GXP (and Coupe Version)

maz23.jpg

Pontiac has been sort of like Buick and Saab these past years- you know they exist, but you don’t really see them and you think about them even less. There’s never any news on Pontiac ’cause no one cares about Pontiacs anymore, right? Well, Pontiac, for one, disagrees, and they do it in the form of the Solstice. Yeah, I know, the Solstice has been around for awhile, but it recently got a lot of attention in the form of the Solstice Coupe. Now, people are talking about Pontiac again, and with good reason- the Solstice and the Coupe are sexy and powerful, so what’s not to like?



Filed Under: CadillacChevyDodgeFooseGMListMuscle carsMustangPontiacSaturnShelby


  • http://www.automoblog.net/ Nick Borgia

    I guess you have a thing for General Motors cars, huh?

    In addition, what about cars from companies that are not run by Americans? You know, the Toyotas, Hondas, Subarus, BMWs and Mercedes-Benz vehicles built here in this country. Can't forget about them either.

  • http://www.automoblog.net/ Will

    I do like General Motors, but the reason that most of the cars here are from GM is that the other two (Ford and Chrysler) don't have that many cars that broadcast "American" loud and clear to the competitors.

    You're right, there are many Hondas, Toyotas, Bimmers, Mercs, etc. that are built in the U.S. and are certified "domestic", but they still are not American cars. For example, a Honda may have 53% of the total car manufactured here, but it's still a Japanese car, through and through.

    Which isn't bad, but this article is all about American.

    But if you don't agree with my selection, and think other cars deserve to be on this list, please share.

  • http://www.automoblog.net/ Nick Borgia

    Not sure about the Malibu or the Volt. None of those really scream "American" to me. I like the rest of the list though.

    The reason I brought up the foreign car makers was that they are made here in the U.S. by American workers using more and more American-made parts. To some, that's something to be proud of.

    Like I said, I like the majority of your list. I get to drool over the new Challenger at the local Dodge dealer everyday cruising to work. I'm just wondering what you and others thought about the "other Domestic cars", so-to-speak.

  • Will

    I see what you're saying about the Volt and the Malibu, but I didn't choose them for their old-school "Americaness", rather, I chose them because they, just like in the old days, are American cars that are better than the competition. At least, the Malibu is, and the Volt probably will be.

  • http://www.automoblog.net/ Chris

    I love the Sky Redline, I'm very impressed with what Saturn has done with their line-up. the Sky realy brings some attention to their changes in a positive way.

    I like the idea of the Challenger and Camaro, but to me it just seems like they're trying too hard. And when I saw the Challenger at the 2008 Chicago Auto Show, it was nice, but didn't really impress. especially when I looked over at the Camaro and could barely tell the two apart. They really need to focus on originality instead of hoping that the "retro-ness" will sell the car.

    Regarding the Volt, who knows if Chevy will ever put this into production. How long have they been talking about it and advertising it with no real action?