By Mark Atkinson for MSN Autos
Last week we mentioned that the Cadillac ATS and Ram 1500 were named the North American Car and Utility Vehicle of the Year at the Detroit auto show. However, neither were named as finalists in the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada's 2013 Canadian Car and Utility of the Year during the recent Montreal International Auto Show.
Why? Well, the Ram is easy enough to explain: there were simply no other new or significantly revised pickups for 2013, and thus no pickup category during last October's AJAC Test Fest.
The ATS is more complicated because it did win its Luxury Car category against the segment-leading BMW 3 Series, something that shocked more than a few people. However, in the final tally, the ATS wasn't able to swing enough votes and was left out of the top-three.
The vehicles that are nominated as finalists are: the Honda Accord sedan, the Hyundai Elantra GT and the Porsche Boxster. The three named for Utility Vehicle are: the Ford Escape 1.6L EcoBoost and the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport 2.0T.
Perhaps having the ATS selected as a finalist for Design of the Year along with the Porsche 911 Carrera S and Boxster will help sooth Cadillac's tempers a tad.
The overall winners are set to be announced during the media preview of the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto on February 14.
What do you think? Agree or disagree with the selections? Let us know...
By Mark Atkinson for MSN Autos Canada
The results are in: during a press conference early in the media days of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week, the North American Car and Utility of the Year awards were presented to Cadillac and Ram. The former for its ATS, which was General Motors' fifth such award, while the Ram 1500 was Chrysler Corp's third in the truck/utility category.
The ATS, with 207 points, beat out heavy favourites like the Honda Accord (159) and Ford Fusion (124), further solidifying Cadillac's efforts at producing a BMW beater.
Nearly 50 journalists from Canada and the United States are polled and asked to vote on the awards, which is now into its 20th year. Last years winners were the Hyundai Elantra and Range Rover Evoque.
The ATS also gained another feather in its cap this morning by being voted as the 'Best of the Best' by the Canadian Automotive Jury, a group of 10 of Canada's most influential car journalists. The results were announced today on CTV's Canada AM and the award will be presented to Cadillac at the Montreal Auto Show's media days on Thursday. The ATS beat out the Accord, Kia Rio and Mazda CX-5 in the final tally.
Whether the ATS can pull out another win in February remains to be seen. The Automobile Journalists Association of Canada will reveal its Car and Utility Vehicle of the Year winners during the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto in about a month from now. Unfortunately, the Ram didn't participate because there weren't enough new or heavily updated pickups on the market to warrant a class this year.
What do you think? Are the ATS and Ram 1500 worthy of the selection? Let us know in the comments.
By Annette McLeod for MSN Autos
The Volkswagen Bulli concept breaks my heart.
It’s an homage to the Type 2 hippie van that started out in the 1950s but became truly iconic with the whole turn-on, tune-in, drop-out generation of fragrant smoke and free love in the ‘60s and ‘70s.
However, and this is the part that makes me so sad, it looks more like an ode to the Ford Flex. Not that I’m knocking the Flex — I dig it, man. But there’s very little here, except its being a van, to really evoke the shaggin’ wagon.
Annette McLeod for MSN Autos
My brother and I have a friendly rivalry when it comes to Mini: He worships them from afar, I borrow them as press cars, drive them around gleefully, then text him pictures with captions like, “Wheee!” Usually, he responds with a five-letter answer that starts with “B” and ends with “itch.” In response, I text him back a dozen or so characters that start with “Mwa” and end in “hahahahaha!”
As far as family dysfunctions, ours is pretty harmless.
So, it will give me even more pleasure than most to see the Mini Goodwood at the CIAS this year. Sure, my brother could buy a ticket, head down to the show and have a good look at it over the shoulders of all those other admirers, but I get to go on press day and fondle it to my heart’s content. (Never mind that other journalists may be watching — they’re a weird bunch anyway.)
By Jeremy Sinek for MSN Autos
The Canadian International Auto Show, the biggest annual celebration of the car in this country, is now open to the public at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
As always, the show is a chance to see the latest production models — and a whole lot more. Some of the special themed exhibits this year will reflect the automotive extremes: on the one hand, the Autoexotica display featuring hard-core ultracars like the Bugatti Veyron and Aston Martin One-77; on the other, the Eco-Drive Showcase featuring fuel-efficient and fuel-alternative vehicles in all their ingenious variety.
By Mark Atkinson for MSN Autos
The Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) kicked off the 2012 Canadian International Auto Show by announcing the winners of its annual Car, Utility Vehicle, Technology and Design awards. The association announced the top-three finalists in each category back in January.
Volkswagen's posh Touareg TDI Clean Diesel beat the Dodge Journey and BMW X3 for Utility Vehicle of the Year.
General Motors' VolTec powertrain from the Chevrolet Volt was chosen over Mazda's SkyActive gasoline engine and GM's eAssist mild hybrid system for the Best New Technology Award.
Finally, Tthe divisive Hyundai Veloster three-door coupe was announced as the Best New Design over the brutally beautiful Jaguar XKR-S and sharp Range Rover Evoque.
Join us as MSN.ca Autos hits the auto show floor in Toronto, today, February 16, during the media preview day. Get expert updates and opinions on vehicle announcements throughout the day. You can also submit comments and questions on what cars and technology you'd like to see and share your thoughts with us!
Mark Atkinson for MSN Autos
While Chevrolets, Chryslers, Fiats and Toyotas are fine for most folks, those looking for a little more verve at the 2011 Canadian International Auto Show would be well-served to visit the inaugural Concorso Exotica display on the 100 level of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
Stuffed to the gills with six-figure supercars and ultra-luxury machines, the Concorso Exotica exhibit is sure to get the blood pumping. Great Britain – surprisingly – has the highest representation of vehicles thanks to examples of the four-door Aston Martin Rapide, Bentley Mulsanne, Lotus Evora and Rolls-Royce Ghost.
By Mark Atkinson for MSN Autos
One aspect that gets lost during the glitz and glam of autoshows is the inevitable question of who’s going to maintain and repair these new vehicles when they inevitably hit the road. With more and more systems being controlled by computers, and increasingly exotic and expensive exhaust and engine parts, ensuring even the most basic car is operating at its best is a challenging proposition.
The answer lies in the high schools that still have automotive programs left in this era of tighter and tighter budgets. Like sports teams, those high schools love to pit their programs against one another, and the Canadian International Auto Show is the proving ground for Greater Toronto Area students to prove their mettle.