As the auto industry rapidly changes, distinctions that were once clear in terms of which cars or manufacturers are truly "American" have blurred. Domestic brands have been bought and sold by foreign companies, while many Japanese automakers boast significant production from domestically located factories. 

Cars.com has created its own system, the American-Made Index, which considers a variety of factors in determining which vehicles have the most red, white, and blue in their veins. 

While rankings like this may seem irrelevant to investors, big-ticket purchases such as automobiles and homes are often done with the heart and not the head. Many people buy domestically manufactured vehicles on principle, and being "more American" can be as important a car's price and features.

A high ranking in one direction or another can boost loyalty and pricing power as well.

Considering all of these factors, I selected the best automaker for a recovering U.S. auto industry in the following slide show.

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American vs. Foreign Cars from The Motley Fool

Austin Smith owns shares of Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool recommends Ford and General Motors and owns shares of Ford. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.