France's American Car City is the country's go-to for muscle cars and big V8 pickups.
If you followed our coverage of the 2016 Paris Motor Show you might have noticed that there were no American automakers at the show. The closest thing to a presence any member of the Big Three had were the Vauxhall and Opel stands. So how did we manage to find a Dodge Challenger Hellcat, Ford Mustang Shelby GT350, a Cadillac Escalade and a ton of trucks there? Let us introduce you to American Car City, a French company that caters to enthusiasts who love muscle cars and big V8s.
We wanted to find out which muscle cars and truck the French love, so we made our way over to the company’s stand, which was located in the same hall as heavyweight automakers Honda and Hyundai. The cars there stood in stark contrast to the tiny, eco-friendly cars that filled the show floor of every hall. Once at American Car City we spoke to Jordan Mizdrak, who had set up an office in the bed of a Ram pickup truck. Naturally, our first question for Jordan was, "What’s the deal with all the trucks?” According to Jordan the trucks were a sneaky way to get a big V8. Buyers register them as work vehicles so as to skirt some taxes and fees.
So what trucks do the French love? Surprisingly, Ram leads the way. Jordan told us it’s all about the big V8s, which the Ram offers and the F-150 doesn’t. We suspect its diesel engine option also helps its popularity as well. He also mentioned that Ram buyers were partial to Gibson Exhaust systems. We were told that the Silverado doesn’t get much love from the French, this despite the fact that it offers both a diesel and a V8. Indeed, we didn’t see any Chevy trucks at the stand. When it comes to muscle cars, things aren’t as upside down. The Mustang is the top choice, with the Challenger coming in second and the Camaro checking in at third; American Car City didn't bring any Camaros to the show.
Again, Jordan told us the V8 is the top choice among buyers. In addition to selling cars, American Car City also does tuning, its own custom jobs and the installation of third party parts. American Car City is a small outfit with just two locations, one in Paris and the other in Lyon. Despite its small footprint we love the fact the French have an appreciation for big V8 trucks and massive muscle cars. Should you ever find yourself in France and see a Hellcat rumbling down the street there’s a good chance it came from these guys.