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With the ferocious competition coming from the European continent, the American automotive industry had to step up on all fronts: performance, style, and overall awesomeness. Disregarding the latest VW scandal, it is right to say the USA provided a series of awesome cars over the years, both for the American market as well as the international market. Here is a list of some of the best cars built by US-based automakers this decade.

  1. Ford Focus ST

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It is highly important to outline the difference between price-bargain and value-bargain. While low-priced vehicles will try its best to constantly remind you about its inferior capabilities, a car with great value (even if not the cheapest) performs differently. It will aim to provide the best choice within a certain budget. Although Ford Focus isn’t the cheapest choice in the compact class, it delivers a lot. Whether you are choosing the 140hp standard or the 252hp hot-hatch version, Ford Focus competes head to head against bold names in the industry: Mercedes, Porsche and Lotus. Expect to see and feel a pumped up version of a Volkswagen GTI, which roars and makes tires scream on every corner, while sweating power and rage through all its pores.

  1. GMC Yukon

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Falling right between the cheaper Chevy Tahoe and the more expensive Cadillac Escalade ESV, the 2015 GMC Yukon rests along the few remaining body on frame full sized SUVs on the market. Nailing the big, blocky theme, GMC Yukon is able to run from 0 to 60mph in just 5.5 seconds, competing directly with Porsche’s Cayenne GTS. The overall design has been improved dramatically compared to its previous versions, although some may argue there is still room for improvement, as Infinity QX80 has proven. Nevertheless, GM doesn’t show signs of closing up production of the model, thus we can expect even further improvements on design and functionality.

  1. Chevrolet Impala

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While being nothing more than a company fleet duck in 2013, Chevrolet did a complete makeover for the 2015 Impala, including interior design, bodywork and powertrain. All elements have been updated in order to produce a new vehicle able to stand out of the crowd. A 2.5 liter 4 cylinder engine featuring an aluminum block pushes the car forward with 196hp and 186 lb-ft. The bigger brother, a 3.6 liter V6 engine available in 2LT trim pushes the performance index even further. With a front-strut and rear multi-link suspension, 2015 Chevrolet Impala is able to offer a smooth ride along with a 21 mpg average fuel economy. Now, you may just stop by to check it out instead of passing by, unbothered by a dull design.

4. Dodge Durango

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One of the best choices when you need to look badass but still provide enough room for up to six people, 2015 Dodge Durango also makes the cut for the best American made vehicles of this decade. The unique Hemi sound coming from beneath the hood distinguishes Durango from other street vehicles, while the suspension and chassis work together to provide an unexpectedly high level of rigidity. Don’t expect to drive 2015 Dodge Durango like you would drive a sports car though; it is still a big SUV with a considerable curb weight. With premium features and an 8-speed gearbox designed for luxury cars, 2015 Dodge Durango also offers a rather affordable price.

  1. Cadillac CTS

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The CTS deserves the compliments for Cadillac’s continued renaissance over the years. The biggest news for 2016 is the replacement of the original 6-speed gearbox with an 8-speed automatic. According to Cadillac, the newly implemented ratios offer faster acceleration and a bolder sense of instant performance. The steering is alive and body roll is almost non-existent, with or without the optional magnetic dampers. A Premium package adds sophisticated features to the already pumped-up sedan, making it even more comfortable and enjoyable on the road. A 2L engine unit is responsible for pushing 268hp and 295 lb-ft to the wheels.

  1. Chevrolet Suburban

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Being on the scene long before anyone knew how to spell SUV or Crossover, the Chevrolet Suburban reached its 11th version this year. While other competitors came around and left in a hurry, the Suburban passed the test of time with impressive scores. The 2015 edition of the Suburban comes with a body-on-frame design sharing many mechanical underpinnings with Chevrolet’s Silverado. A 5.3-liter V8 engine makes use of a 6-speed automatic gearbox with manual shifting mode selector, delivering 355hp and 383 lb-ft of torque to the ground, through a set of 19” wheels. Buyers can opt between 6-seater or 9-seater versions, depending on what’s needed the most: more people or more trunk space.

  1. Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat

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We’ve left the best for last, and for good reason. With 707hp, there is little need for words when describing the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat. It all starts at the heart of the beast, where a 6.2 liter supercharged and intercooled Hemi gives its tremendous force: 707hp and 650 lb-ft, enough to burn out a set of tires in seconds. Called the most powerful muscle car of the moment, the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat breathes fire upon everything daring to stand on its path. It scores a 0-60mph time of 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 165 mph. It travels over the quarter mile in just 11.1 seconds. The numbers could keep flowing, but at this point, it is basically useless. This demon-child is the ultimate American big-block car.

American automakers haven’t wasted any time in producing automotive products which can easily compete, and in some cases surpass, their European and Asian competitors. Everything from compacts to full-sized SUVs and insanely powerful models have been released by Ford, Chevrolet and Dodge. All working to improve the overall automotive market in the US and around the world.

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