Ford Bronco SUV, Maverick pickup win utility, truck of the year titles
Vehicles from Ford Motor won two out of the three North American Car, Truck and Utility of the Year awards for the second year in a row. The company's Bronco off-road SUV grabbed the title of the utility of the year whereas the Maverick compact pickup won the truck of the year title.
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The third title of the car of the year was given to Honda's redesigned Civic compact car. The vehicles won these titles out of a dozen of candidates given that they must be new or substantially changed for the current model year. They were judged by fifty automotive journalists from the US and Canada who evaluated the finalists on value, innovation, design, performance, safety, technology and driver satisfaction.
For the Utility of the Year title, apart from Bronco, the other finalists included Genesis GV70 and Hyundai Ioniq 5 electric SUV. Other finalists for the Truck of the Year title included the Hyundai Santa Cruz and the Rivian R1T pickup. Whereas the finalists for the Car of the Year title along with Civic included Lucid Air electric sedan, Volkswagen Golf GTI and R sports cars.
Interestingly, fully-electric vehicles were finalists in all three categories this year, however, judges picked gas-powered or electric hybrid vehicles as winners. The more affordable prices of the Civic and Maverick likely appealed to the group of jurors, as per Guidehouse Insights E-Mobility Principal Analyst Sam Abuelsamid, AP reported.
Last year, Ford Mustang Mach-E electric SUV won the utility award and Abuelsamid believes that electric vehicles will win more of the awards in the coming years as more and more models will be rolled out at lower prices and in more popular segments. By the end of last year, about 20 electric vehicles were on sale in the US, and this year manufacturers will start selling about 20 more, Abuelsamid added.
(with inputs from the Associated Press)