The Chevrolet Bolt EV won Car of the Year, and the Honda Ridgeline became Truck of the Year in the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) that opened last week.
The Chevrolet Bolt EV beat the Genesis G90 and Volvo S90, and the Honda Ridgeline defeated the Ford F-Series Super Duty and Nissan Titan in the event that will last to Jan. 22.
A new award — Utility of the Year — was added this year and has been won by the Chrysler Pacifica over the Jaguar F-Pace and Mazda CX-9.
The Chevrolet Bolt EV is a plug-in electric vehicle classified as a mid-size car, with a range of 238 miles and 200 horsepower. It is powered by a 60 kWh lithium-ion battery and has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of 36,620 U.S. dollars.
Mark Reuss, General Motors’ executive vice president for global product development, accepted the award on behalf of the Chevrolet team.
“General Motors is committed to lead and mass produce attainable, high value, and exciting electric vehicles, and this is the Bolt platform and this is our springboard into the future,” he said.
The Truck of the Year, the Honda Ridgeline, has a 280 horsepower, 3.5 LV-6 engine, giving it a towing capacity of slightly more than 2250 kg. It gets 26 mpg on the highway, 19 mpg in the city, and has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of 29,475 dollars.
John Mendel, executive vice president at American Honda, told Xinhua that “Ridgeline has been incredible for us. Consumers love it. It has been virtually sold out since we launched it here last year.”
The Chrysler Pacifica, which won Utility of the Year, is classified as a minivan equipped with a 287 horsepower, 3.6L V-6 engine. It gets 28 mpg on the highway, 18 mpg in the city, and has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price starting at 28,595 dollars.
Tim Kuniskis, General Motors’ head of Passenger Car Brands, accepted the award for Chrysler.
“We were very confident that we had something really incredible on our hands,” he said. “It has been on the market for six months and the reaction has been fantastic.”
At last year’s NAIAS, the Ford F-150 beat the Chevrolet Colorado and Lincoln MKC to win the 2015 North American Truck of the Year award, and the Volkswagen Golf won against the Ford Mustang and Hyundai Genesis to become Car of the Year.
According to the Car of the Year guidelines, “the awards recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year based on factors including innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.”
“To be eligible, vehicles must be ‘all new’ or ‘substantially changed,’ according to the guidelines.
The awards, set up in 1994, have been given by automotive journalists representing different outlets in the United States and Canada.
With 40-plus vehicle debuts and more than 750 vehicles on display, the auto show was expected to attract 5,000 journalists from more than 60 countries.