Originally Posted by Staszek
Tell that to all the Toyota owners who get there cars out of Kentucky and still constantly rank as some of the best built most reliable cars in the world.
Well, unfortunately, this was not the case for my dad. His previous car was a 1995 Camry, which was built in Japan (I know from the vin number). Despite being crashed rather badly twice, the ONLY thing that broke were literally the self extending antenna and a light bulb on the dashboard. Apart from those, not even a rust spot... Amazing!! So, when that car was written off after a second accident, 10 years and 370,000 km on the clock, my dad got another Camry without a second thought. In fact, he didn't bother with a test drive.
The second one, a 2005 made in Canada I guess, was a lot less than impressive. The car makes a god awful buzzing noise at highway speeds (something in the engine room is vibrating as the car gain speed), there are rust spots everywhere and one of the window regulators work intermittently. All this on a car less than 4 years old and around 60,000 km... Also, there's the feel of the car. The older one, despite being smaller and being crashed twice, still felt surprisingly solid. The 2005 feels... well... flimsy... (although, this could be distorted as I'm used to my BMW... which still feels solid as a rock at 9 years old).
I know a fair bit about manufacturing processes and I realize that the process design is much more important than the workers. The factories in Germany are mostly automated anyways, so if they bring in the same equipment, there shouldn't be much of a difference. Nonetheless, given my experience with my dad's Camry, I'm not happy with the prospect of getting an American build 3 series....