SANTA MONICA, Calif. — This afternoon, the jury for the North American Car and Truck of the Year (NACTOY) announced the finalists for its prestigious awards: the 2012 Ford Focus, 2012 Hyundai Elantra and the 2012 Volkswagen Passat in the car category and the 2012 BMW X3, 2012 Honda CR-V and the 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque in the truck category.
“Every year, the awards’ jurors insist that selecting the winners is more difficult than in years past,” said NACTOY juror and Edmunds.com Senior Analyst Michelle Krebs. “But this year was especially challenging because the car category is dominated by small cars, and the truck category did not have a single ‘real’ truck.”
Edmunds.com has reviewed each of the six cars and trucks in the running, and it’s tough to argue with the jury’s selections:
- 2012 Hyundai Elantra – “After last year’s complete redesign, the Elantra has shed its frumpy, anonymous styling and gained fluid curves and a coupe-like roof line. The 2012 Hyundai Elantra looks good, and that counts for a lot in a segment not normally known for visual excitement.”
- 2012 Ford Focus – “Desirable and fun to drive, the new 2012 Ford Focus is a special small car, one that offers the features and sophistication of a large car in a small, practical package.”
- 2012 Volkswagen Passat – “VW’s entry in the crowded family sedan category is now a better fit for the majority of consumers. It’s priced right, drives well and finally holds a family of five comfortably. And thankfully, it still has its German roots.”
- 2012 BMW X3 – “The 2012 BMW X3 is a major player in the small luxury crossover SUV game, but it’s not without peer. [Its competitors] offer a slightly different take on what the ideal luxury crossover should be. But if you want one with a performance-oriented personality, the 2012 BMW X3 is a great choice.”
- 2012 Honda CR-V – “The crossover distinguishes itself by offering steering and handling that are sharper and more rewarding than most of the competition’s.”
- 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque – “Despite having the most secure off-road credentials in its class, the new 2012 Land Rover Evoque is designed for a life on-road. It’s impressively agile, standing toe-to-toe with other sporting compact SUVs.”
Last year’s NACTOY winners were the Chevrolet Volt and Ford Explorer. This year’s winners will be announced on Jan. 9, 2012, the first press day of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
For more details on how the jury narrowed down this year’s nominees, please visit http://www.edmunds.com/
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