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2010 North American Car and Truck of the Year awards
Ford sweeps N.A. Car and Truck of the Year awards at 2010 Detroit Auto Show
Detroit, MI -- Ford Motor Company scored a historic doubleheader, capturing both the North American Car of the Year and North American Truck of the Year awards for the 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid and 2010 Ford Transit Connect, respectively, at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), also known as the Detroit Auto Show. It is only the third time in 17 years that one manufacturer has won both titles.
The North American Car and Truck of the Year awards recognize vehicles based on factors including innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar. A jury of 49 automotive journalists in the United States and Canada vote for the vehicles, which must be “all-new” or “substantially changed” from the previous model to qualify for the award.
The Fusion Hybrid edged out finalists including the Buick LaCrosse and Volkswagen Golf/GTI to win the North American Car of the Year award. It is the fourth hybrid vehicle in 17 years to win recognition as North American Car (or Truck) of the Year. It also is the second hybrid win for Ford - the most hybrid wins for any automaker. The Ford Escape Hybrid was named North American Truck of the Year in 2005.
The Transit Connect bested finalists including the Chevrolet Equinox and Subaru Outback to win the North American Truck of the Year award. It is the sixth Ford truck to win the award - the most wins of any automaker in the 17-year history of the awards program. It also is the second year in a row that Ford has captured the title. Last year, top honours went to the 2009 Ford F-150.
The all-new Fusion Hybrid arrived in dealers in March. Despite the slump in overall industry sales, 2009 was a record-breaking year for the current model of the Ford Fusion. Sales are at an all-time high, with the Fusion Hybrid accounting for almost 20% of total Fusion retail sales. Perhaps even more significant, more than 60% of Fusion Hybrid sales have been to customers coming from import brands - mostly Toyota and Honda.
The 2010 Fusion Hybrid is built at Ford's Hermosillo (Mexico) Stamping and Assembly Plant.
The Transit Connect was brought to the US to fulfil the unmet needs of small business owners and entrepreneurs, offering them a new vehicle choice with significantly improved fuel economy, generous and accessible cargo space, and the agility and manoeuvrability to operate in crowded urban areas.
Powered by a 2.0-litre I-4 engine with a four-speed automatic overdrive transmission, the Transit Connect offers double the fuel economy of full-size vans, delivering an EPA-estimated 22 mpg city and 25 mpg highway.
The Transit Connect also has more than double the cargo-carrying capacity of the Chevrolet HHR Panel, making it suitable for a broader range of commercial-use applications. And it offers commercial users a cargo payload of up to 1,600 pounds - a larger payload than the full-size Dodge Ram 1500 standard-cab short-box pickup truck.
The 2010 Ford Transit Connect is built at the Ford Otosan Kocaeli Plant in Kocaeli, Turkey.
© CarTest.ca. Posted Jan. 14, 2010.