America didn’t invent the automobile—the Germans get credit for that, and for the road trip. But we sure as hell popularized it.
Our country’s always had a “bigger, louder, faster” approach to vehicles, giving the world muscle cars that are better at smoking tires than turning them and SUVs that spend more time in mall parking lots than on dirt roads. Here, in the land of the free and the home of the brave, excess is encouraged, because driving is more about wanting than needing. That’s what happens when you combine endless roads, cheap gas, a penchant for suburban living, and decades of serious industrial might.
The US of A may be the best (worst?) when it comes to this, but it’s hardly alone. Lots of foreign automakers have adopted the “more is more” approach and piled on power, speed, and mass with no practical aim in mind. So on this most American of holidays, we salute the cars that be foreign in name but fully American at heart.