Not a single manufacturer placed more than one vehicle on the lists of finalists for this year's North American Car, Truck and Utility of the Year awards that will be handed out in January at the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
North American Car of the Year, et al
Earlier today at Automobility L.A., the new name for media days that precedes the Los Angeles Auto Show, representatives from Deloitte & Touche and the awards committee announced the three finalists for the 2017 North American Car of the Year, 2017 North American Truck of the year and 2017 North American Utility of the Year.
Patterned after the European Car of the Year award, 2017 marks the twenty-fourth year of the North American awards – the longest for any not associated with a specific publication. Awarded for "excellence in innovation, design, safety, performance, technology, driver satisfaction and value," the jury is comprised of around60 journalists from the United States and Canada. In order to be eligible for consideration, a vehicle must be "all new or substantially changed" from the previous model and be on sale shortly after the announcement of the awards.
That announcement takes place at a press conference during the opening of media days the North American International Auto Show (although NAIAS does not sponsor the awards in any way) which this year will occur on January 9th.
Award trivia: During the previous twenty-three years, hybrids have won the North American Car of the Year award 6 times. Domestic automakers have been honored with the award twelve times, Japanese automakers have won it four times, and European automakers have received it five times while Korean automakers have won it twice.
In the North American Truck of the Year competition, domestic automakers have taken the award home fifteen times while Japanese automakers have won four times and European automakers have won four times. Eligible vehicles include all sizes of pickups as well as light- and medium-duty commercial vans.
The North American Utility of the Year award is new for 2017. In addition to crossovers and SUVs, this segment also includes "passenger-oriented" minivans.
The process this year began with a list of "all the new or substantially changed" cars, trucks and utilities that were eligible for the awards. The finalists were then chosen from a short list of a dozen or so vehicles in each category.
2017 NACTOY finalists
North American Car of the Year
North American Truck of the Year