Now, I try to be patriotic and support the American worker by buying American, those products made here at home. But there are times when buying American is just not financially sound, or affordable in this case.
Our 1999 Ford Windstar, with 63,000 miles on it, lost it’s transmission…..63,000 miles. The cost? $3,047 for a new (rebuilt) transmission. Now, my 1988 Isuzu Trooper II with 192,000 miles, is still on its original transmission, and yes its an automatic. This is the second Ford that we’ve owned, with the same nightmareish incidents. But from all the foreign owned veichles from Toyota to Honda to my current Trooper, there has never, ever been an issue. Just ensure that the routine maintenance is done and all is fine. We’ve also kept up on the routine maintenance on the Windstar, at the Ford service center to boot, but that wasn’t enough apparently. Oddly, the drivers side power window motor went out just months before. And a few months before that? Major repair for the front end. All this after the warranty has expired.
Is it just me? I have a neighbor who has a Ford Expedition. His issue? He had to replace his entire engine, apparently defective. Lucky for him it was under warranty. Another neighbor also has a Ford Windstar, it’s been an a nightmare for them also.
So here are the painful questions. What exactly is the problem with American built vehicles that support the reputation that foreign vehicles are better, specifically Toyota and Honda?
Is it that the American worker is just not as good as their foreign counterparts?
Is it that American management is just not as good as their foreign couterparts?
Can we just not engineer and build quality vehicles?
Is it big labor interference? (opening a can of worms here)
I don’t know that answers to those questions, or as to why when (we) buy American vehicles, we have problems, although we treat them with just as much care as our foreign made vehicles. All I know is that with having a family, I can no longer afford to be this patriotic in buying any more American made vehicles. It’s just too expensive in the long run.
But with a trillion dollar retail automotive market in the U.S., I don’t think my decision will have much of an impact, which is why Ford vehicles will continue to be the quality that they are.