Ford, GMC and Chevy are iconic American brands but they've faced stiff competition from foreign automakers for more than a half a century. This competition has advantages and disadvantages. One of the advantages of competition is that it forces each brand to make autos we like and want. Innovation is a common result, bringing new, useful, or valuable features in every vehicle. The three brands below are all taking strides towards the US market and it will be our job to evaluate their value. However, we already have some reasons we want them here.
You don't know about this brand unless you read auto news every day. By the time you see a GAC vehicle in the US, it won't bear the same logos as it did in China, the manufacturer's home. There, GAC produces a number of vehicle brands, one of which is Trumpchi. GAC has been eyeing the US market since late last year and says it plans to enter in 2019 with a few Trumpchi vehicles, which will be rebranded. The company also says it can undercut other manufacturers' prices by a significant margin. Of course, the reliability that goes along with the lower prices will have to be determined.
A potential problem for GAC is Donald Trump's "Buy American, Hire American" push. A tax on vehicles produced completely in China could reduce those margins a great deal, possibly enough to persuade GAC to look elsewhere to expand. Therefore, whatever brand Trumpchi is meant to become may or may not be realized for a while. That's too bad because the low-cost sedans and crossovers GAC plans to offer Americans look like potential winners.
Citroën isn't a brand you often see on US roads in the 2000s but that is changing. PSA Group, of which Citroën is a subsidiary, launched a car sharing service in Los Angeles recently. The group plans to expand to other parts of the country and is expected to offer traditional sales or leases before long.
Besides the fact that Citroën is returning to the US market after three decades or so, the brand is also worth noting because of its proclivity for innovative, utilitarian design. The Citroën C4 Cactus (pictured above) combines the efficiency of a sedan with the comfort of an SUV and adds a unique armor along its exterior to prevent scratches from shopping carts, skateboards and other paint-scratching items.
You have probably noticed this one before but there's a chance you haven't if you don't watch much TV. Those of us who do watch TV have seen the commercials for the new Alfa Romeo Giulia sedan. It's a sporty, beautiful car that was almost completely designed by Alfa as opposed to Fiat Chrysler, its parent company, or any of its sister companies. Drivers tend to agree that it feels like an Alfa, which means it can go like a real sports car. It also looks like a sports car, or sports sedan, and sells for under $40,000. This is a strong Jaguar XE competitor.