America’s Other Automakers

A History of the Foreign-Owned Automotive Sector in the United States

Title Details

Pages: 292

Illustrations: 4 b&w images

Trim size: 6.000in x 9.000in



Pub Date: 04/01/2021

ISBN: 9-780-8203-5895-6

List Price: $34.95


Pub Date: 04/01/2021

ISBN: 9-780-8203-5894-9

List Price: $114.95

America’s Other Automakers

A History of the Foreign-Owned Automotive Sector in the United States

An in-depth look at the impact of foreign industry on American communities

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In 2018 almost half of all vehicles made in North America were produced at foreign-owned plants, and the sector was on track to monopolize the market. Despite this, the industry has been overlooked compared with its domestic counterpart, both in scholarship and popular memory. Redressing this neglect, America’s Other Automakers provides a new history of the foreignowned auto sector, the first to extensively draw on archival sources and to articulate the human agency of participants, including workers, managers, and industry recruiters.

Timothy J. Minchin challenges the view that the industry’s growth primarily reflected incentives, stressing human agency and the complexity of individual stories instead. Deeply human in its approach, the book also explores the industry’s impact on grassroots communities, showing that it had more costs than supporters acknowledged. Drawing on a wide range of primary and secondary sources, America’s Other Automakers uncovers significant tensions over unionization, reports of discriminatory hiring, and unease about the industry’s rapid growth, critically exploring seven large assembly facilities and their impact on the communities in which they were built.

The auto industry remains prestigious enough that winning the factory sweepstakes remains big news and a hopeful sign of a prosperous future. It remains to be seen how the transplant story will play out, however, and this book is a helpful and engaging foray into the topic.

—Daniel Clark, Labour/Le Travail

America's Other Automakers should be an opening salvo from southern historians of all stripes interrogating how these auto factories reshaped the region, from politics to culture.

—William D. Goldsmith, Southern Historical Association Journal


Bennett H. Wall Award, Southern Historical Association