Until recent years, I've always thought of myself as a hardcore GM man. I lusted over Corvettes, dad drove a Silverado, mom a Saturn. I grew up in the back of a GMC Safari. GM cars had been in my life since before my life was a thing. Of course, when I was in this mindset, none of the Big 3 were putting out anything truly spectacular. It was the new malaise era for US cars and all three companies were struggling. I kept my ground and defended GM and bashed Ford and Dodge to to a pulp in every automotive discussion. I was as big of a fanboy as you could get. To an embarrassing extent sometimes.

Of course, as we all know, everything went to shit rather quickly for all three companies in 2009-2010. GM and Chrysler had to file bankruptcy and Ford has to sell the rights to everything they had just to avoid the same fate. It was a low time for the automotive world in general, but more so for the US industry. We lost Saturn, Pontiac, Hummer, and Mercury. Jobs were lost, companies and factories closed, it was a tough time for everyone in the industry.

This was the wakeup call for US companies to get their shit together. GM was down 4 companies, Ford one, and Chrysler was bought by italians. It was a nearly fresh start for everyone. Product lines were updated, engines upgraded, quality increased on all fronts. The hard times lingered, but everything was getting better.

I remember when it happened. When I fell in love with the recently refreshed (in 2011) Charger.

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I was standing at my bus stop at 7:00 in the morning, and a brand new Charger R/T rolled up to the stop sign in front of me. It was a metallic grey with the same chrome five-spoke wheels as the one pictured above. Time stopped and I just sat there and stared at the car, probably creeping out the young man sitting inside. The scallop on the side, the aggressive front end, those tail lights. I couldn't take my eyes off of it. Then as he drove away I heard the Hemi rumble and I couldn't deny it any longer, I loved a Mopar.

It slowly started a long line of my starting to like Fords and Dodges. The Raptor, Shelby GT500, Challenger, 300, Dart, Grand Cherokee, Focus ST, the list goes on. It didn't occur to me until this started happening that all three companies have their own unique ways of going about things and all have their perks.

I have to ask: Why do we do this? Why do we flame each other over what brand of American cars we like? They all make amazing cars.

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Ford had their EcoBoost line of engines that give you V8 or V6 power while giving you V6 or I4 fuel economy.

They've got the all-aluminum and twin-turbocharged V6 F150 that advanced the 1500 segment of trucks. There's the Raptor that's a desert rat from the factory. There's the 600 horsepower EcoBoost V6 Ford GT. They've got the only two American made hot hatches on the market right now. They're making a flat-plane crank V8 Mustang for heaven's sake! Plus their Lincoln line which, to me, all look pretty damn good.

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Then there's Mopar with their RWD Charger and 300 cars that ooze America from every joint.

They make the shockingly luxurious Grand Cherokee. The only diesel 1500 pickup on the market Ram EcoDiesel. There's the nearly mid-sized inside with a sexy Italian exterior Dart. There's the always classic Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited with their unstoppable off-roading ability. Not to mention they've got the two original names in the mini-van business. 707 horsepower, supercharged Hemis on top of all of that.

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Then there's GM with the super car killer Corvette Z06.

They've got their uber-luxurious Caddilacs that beat BMWs in the driving dynamics department. Their segment leading SUVs. The handles like something that weighs half as much Camaro Z/28. Then we have the SS, which is said to be the reincarnation of the E39 BMW M5. The Buick line which is our way into Europe's Opels.

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Even while all three companies have their amazing models, they also all have insanely competitive mid-sized sedans, compacts, crossovers, and hybrids.

Going back to my question, why do we do what we do and bash each other for liking one American brand over the other? We're always going to have our personal biases, but why not put that aside just enjoy the amazing cars America is putting out right now together, instead of hating on one or the other because it wears the wrong badge?

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I could go as far as going into this for all brands, but I see it as most apparently with the American Big 3 over anything else.

So, here's to enjoying American brands and their awe-inspiring hunks of metal, gasoline, and freedom.

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And on top of all that, hope it never gets as bad as it did back in 2010 again.