Detroit's Uphill Battle


New cars, new plants and a strong new emphasis on quality for U.S. autos

When Detroit's Jefferson Avenue assembly plant rolled out its first Chrysler in 1925, there were 56 optimistic American automakers. Along with familiar names such as Ford, Chevrolet and Cadillac were ones that have now become quaint, like Stutz Bearcat, Reo and Jordan. This year another new car is coming off the Jefferson Avenue assembly line. But today's Detroit is far more sober about its debut. Only four U.S. auto companies remain, and two of those, American Motors and Chrysler, are in danger of...

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