We all know that in the 70's & early 80's that imports had issues - especially with bodies rusting out. As technology improved & advertising reached more & more people, imports got better while many American Made cars got worse in quality. The improved advertising made it so that the public was made more aware of quality issues in American cars. This, I feel, is what led to the trend of the public buying more imports.
Don't blame the public - they were just reacting to the product that was put in front of them. Granted, American cars are of a much better quality these days and it needs to be advertised this way in order to turn the trend around. I have never owned an import, but people need to quit griping about how the American public screwed over the American auto worker - how about blaming the American engineers who designed & made the low quality vehicles for so many years, causing the American consumer to look elsewhere for a good car?