Here’s what surprised me though: They’re getting a lot of those cars from the Big 3 U.S. automakers.
Did they think we wouldn’t notice?
Well let me tell you, Big 3, the gig’s up!
Europe already has some pretty darn exclusive auto brands: Audi, Porsche, Mercedes, BMW. I took an odd pride in knowing we Americans had Ford, GM, and Chrysler trying their hardest to provide us with top quality engineering and economy.
But no, friends, it’s not true. At least not anymore. Want a 63 mpg Ford economy car? Go to Europe. Want a 36 mpg Ford all-wheel-drive crossover? Go to Europe. How about a 32 mpg Chevy SUV? Yeah. Europe.
Umm… hello? Anyone else find it horribly ironic and feel a bit deceived that our own automakers seem to be sending their cream of the crop across the pond, while we’re left with the 24 mpg Ford Flex?
It seems automakers are beginning to get the idea, evidenced by Ford’s plans to begin bringing popular European models to our side of the Atlantic. Even with those plans in place, we won’t have our first shot at them until at least 2010.
Maybe it’s just time to hope that our Big 3 go belly-up, and make room for more of the world’s fun, economical automakers to enter America. Renault and Alfa Romeo, anyone?
As we wait to find out if and when that ever happens, here are some attempts to appease us Americans with a little taste of Europe:
The European iteration of the Ford Fiesta is coming in 2010.
The Ford C-Max, a 5-seat Multi-Activity Vehicle based on the Focus, should arrive in 2011.
The Ford Kuga, likely to appear as a new Ford Escape, should be in showrooms in 2012.
No doubt the United States’ auto market is changing.
The question is, will our automakers respond fast enough to offer us their best?
Tell us: What European autos would you like to see available in the U.S.?