It is a warm summers day; the heat rises from the pavement as the roar of engines and smell of gasoline surround you. With a throaty growl the first car pulls up to the line on the drag strip in front of you. Its large V-8 pounds as it pulls up to the starting mark. An annoying whine announces the challenger, a smaller car covered in decals and brand names. Its four cylinders hum as it stops, ready to go.
The light flashes green and both cars jump into action. As the front wheels leap from the pavement, the eight cylinders power the 4000 pounds of Detroit muscle down the track. Beside it, the much lighter Japanese Rice-Rocket squeals down the track with a whine of a turbocharger issuing from under the hood. But from the beginning the race was over, the American muscle car once again leaving the Rice-Rocket sucking its exhaust. This is the scene at drag strips all over North America. Domestic automobiles defeat the imported cars time and time again but they just dont give up.
It is not only at the drag strip where domestically built cars come out on top. In everyday life a domestic car is a much better choice for many reasons. I will spend the next little while convincing you of this point. Please stick around for the ride.
If you talk to an import driver and tell him that domestics are better, at some point he is going to come out with the same old argument of Power per litre. What this means is the amount of horsepower an engine gets per litre of displacement.
Because most imports have smaller engines they must get a good power per litre rating to move the car. Because domestics use larger engines they do not need this. But even some domestic cars using smaller engines get good power per litre marks. Here are just a couple domestic cars getting over 100 horsepower per litre and they have larger engines then most imports. A Pontiac Solice with a 2.2L engine gets about 240hp, which equals out to 120hp/L, a Dodge Spirit R/T also with a 2.
2L motor gets around 224hp, which is 102hp/L. And if this is not enough, there is a very common engine used by enthusiasts all over North America that gets 169hp/L. That means if a 1.8L Honda engine were this efficient it would make over 300hp. Why is this engine not used in cars today? Well because it is a model airplane engine that is only 0.0065L.
If you were to buy 195 of these engines and put them in your Acura then you can brag to me about your Power per litre but not a moment sooner.
Not only do domestics beat imports in the area of power per litre but they beat them all the way to the bank as well. While imports may be cheaper to buy right away, in the end they will cost you more. I am talking about oil changes, brakes, and any other repairs that will need to be done during your cars life. For the sake of comparison I have chosen two similar cars, one domestically made and one imported. I chose the Ford Focus ZX3 for the domestic.
It is a compact two-door hatchback. I decided on the Honda Civic for the imported car. It is also a compact two-door hatchback. I then did some research on cost of retail parts. While for a couple parts the Honda was cheaper, for most, the Ford was the cheaper choice. Here are just a few of the parts I researched.
For a left tie rod on the Focus it was a mere $47.33 while the Honda would hit you for $62.40. A taillight would cost you $166.96 if you bought a Civic but it is only $145.71 on the Ford.
And for my last part I chose a big one. For a hood on the Ford Focus it is $472.50, which is quite a bit of money, but on the Honda Civic it was $522.43. These are just a couple of common parts that you may need during your cars life and .