we fuse our amps right at the battery, but ive never seen a vehicle with a fuse right by the battery,
This^. In the case of the starter, the run is short, carefully placed, often guarded, and basically 100% constrained at all points in its run. Alternator tends to be the same way for models that aren't fused. I can't think of any other components that are not either fused or protected by fusible links.Far as I know everything is fused except the starter, which in a low battery situation needs every amp it can find. It is typical for headlights/etc to have fusible links in the wire. Also typical for OE wiring to be very careful of wire damage and shorting.