PwC forecasts that by 2020 about 107 million vehicles will be manufactured worldwide. Of all the world’s vehicle manufacturers, many of the most respected and valued are from Japan. The United States in particular recognizes the value of a Japanese engine import: Japan was the fourth largest supplier of imports in 2016, worth a total of $132.2 billion. Of those imports, the top three categories are vehicles, machinery, and electrical machinery.
How Popular Are Japanese Cars in America?
All this commerce in Japanese import engines and other vehicle supplies helped to make Japan’s Toyota the world’s most valuable car brand in 2016, worth nearly $30 billion. There are a lot of Japanese-made cars of all kinds in America, though. In 2016, 389,000 Toyota Camrys were sold in the United States alone, and Honda, with the Accord and the Civic, produced two of the top five selling cars in the United States.
Why Do Americans Love Japanese Cars?
One of the draws of these vehicles is their reliability and durability. Japanese brands regularly lead the field in durability. In 2015, seven of the top 10 most reliable car makers were Japanese, and one third of the Reliability Index’s top 100 vehicles were from Japanese car makers. Their durability is such that it’s not uncommon for the engines of a Japanese car to outlast the car body. This also means there are a lot of used Japanese engines for sale, and a large market for Japanese engine import.
What Makes Them So Reliable?
What’s behind this reliability? It has to do with the manufacturing process itself. The mass-production line method pioneered by Henry Ford allowed cars to be produced cheaply and quickly, but the downside was that much can go wrong along the line, and mistakes could only be deal with after the vehicle actually came off the line. When Toyota began, they could not afford the stamping presses needed to use the line method, so they made had to use one press to do it all. This meant things were slower and more expensive; but it also meant that problems could be fixed as soon as they appeared.
What Are Things Like Today?
Japanese car manufacturing has come a long way since those early days with Toyota, but they have continued to emphasize quality and attention to detail in the engine, while developing ways to reduce costs and stay competitive with other vehicle manufacturers. This has been so effective that the Japanese engine exchange market in used engines and transmissions, and Japanese engine import in the United States, are almost as active as the market for new vehicles.
And not only is reliability influencing Japanese engine import and the trade in used Japanese engines, but user-friendliness does as well. Japanese manufacturers have tended to make cars that can be fixed relatively easily; unlike American cars with so many rivets that it’s difficult to do anything yourself, or European brands that demand special tooling that is difficult and expensive to source.
While the rest of the world is certainly actively narrowing the dependability gap by building more reliable cars, as well as offering more of the latest technology, the Japanese brands still offer some of the best reliability around.