• Dec 18, 2008

Click either image for a high-res gallery of the NACOTY and TOTY nominees

Now that the motoring world has announced the International COTY and TOTY contenders, the finalists for North American Car and Truck of the Year have been revealed. The six chosen chariots consist of some of the same nameplates, but whereas the international body tapped the Dodge Challenger, Ford Flex and Nissan GT-R for the car honors, the 50 N.A. automotive journalists have elected the Ford Flex, Hyundai Genesis and Volkswagen Jetta TDI as finalists for the 2009 NACOTY. So the Challenger makes the International list but not the North American one? Baffling. The Nissan GT-R didn't make the N.A. cut, but it could be argued that the Flex and Genesis are more important to their respective companies, and the Jetta, well, it's green and all. The Jetta TDI did appear on the separate Earth, Wind & Power list from the international committee.

On the Truck side we have the Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram making both lists, but the N.A. group selected another Earth, Wind & Power nominee, the Mercedes-Benz ML320 BlueTEC, instead of the internationally-nominated Subaru Forester. All of the contendors seem worthy of recognition, but we're sure you'll have your own suggestions, as do we. Both sets of winners will be announced January 11th at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The full press release with all of the eligible nominees is after the jump and we've assembled a gallery of the finalists below.


[Source: North American Car & Truck of the Year]

PRESS RELEASE

2009 NORTH AMERICAN CAR AND TRUCK OF THE YEAR
FINALISTS ANNOUNCED.

December 18, 2008 – Two European automakers, two domestics and for the first time a Korean automaker comprise the six finalists for the North American Car of the Year and the North American Truck of the Year awards, it was announced today.

Two of the six vehicles are new, clean diesels that can be sold in all 50 states. In 16 years this is the first time a diesel-powered vehicle has been a finalist.

A group of 50 automotive journalists voted the Ford Flex, Hyundai Genesis and Volkswagen Jetta TDI as finalists for the 2009 North American Car of the Year.

The Dodge Ram, Ford F-150 and Mercedes-Benz ML320 BlueTEC are finalists for the 2009 North American Truck of the Year.

The awards are unique in the United States because -- instead of being given by a single publication -- they are given by 50 automotive journalists from the United States and Canada who represent magazines, television, radio, newspapers and web sites.

The awards are designed to recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year based on factors that include innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.

To be eligible, vehicles must be "all-new" or "substantially changed" from the previous model. This year the jury considered more than 50 vehicles and finally settled on 14 cars and 11 trucks that deserved to be on the ballot.

Michelle Collins, Vice Chairman Automotive at Deloitte & Touche, was responsible for counting the ballots, which jurors sent directly to the accounting firm.

The finalists were announced today at a news conference during a luncheon held by the Detroit Economic Club and the North American International Auto Show.

Now the jurors begin a second round of voting. In this second round they will vote on the three car and three truck finalists. As with the first round of voting, those ballots go directly to Ms. Collins at Deloitte.

Ms. Collins will be the only person who knows the winners, which will be announced January 11th at the North American International Auto Show. Although the winners are disclosed at a news conference at the North American International Auto Show, the show does not give the awards.

Last year the North American Car of the Year was the Chevrolet Malibu and the North American Truck of the Year was the Mazda CX-9.

This is the 16th year of the awards, which are funded exclusively by the jurors. During that time:

- Hybrids have been honored four times.

- Domestic automakers have won North American Car of the Year eight times. Japanese automakers have won three times. European automakers have won four times.

- Domestic automakers have won North American Truck of the Year nine times. Japanese automakers have won four times. European automakers have won twice.


Here are the vehicles on which the jurors voted:

2009 North American Car of the Year nominees

Audi A4
BMW 1 Series
Cadillac CTS-V
Dodge Challenger
Ford Flex
Honda Fit
Hyundai Genesis
Jaguar XF
Lincoln MKS
Mazda 6
Nissan GT-R
Pontiac G8
Toyota Venza
Volkswagen Jetta TDI

2009 North American Truck of the Year nominees

BMW X6
Chevrolet Traverse
Dodge Ram
Ford F-150
Honda Pilot
Infiniti FX35/50
Kia Borrego
Mercedes-Benz ML320 BlueTEC
Nissan Murano
Subaru Forester
Volkswagen Tiguan


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 19 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      The Flex is probably listed as a car since it's based off Ford's full size car platform.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_D3_platform#D4
      • 6 Years Ago
      Am I missing something where it says the Challenger and GT-R were not nominated in the NACOTY?

      Yet they're both on that list of nominees ??

        • 6 Years Ago
        They're nominees, but not finalists.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @Torrent

        William Hung was "nominated" to stay on American Idol if that clarifies it for you... :)
        • 6 Years Ago
        They did not make the list of finalists for the North American car of the year.

        They are both on the list of finalists for International car of the year.

        The list at the end of the press release are the nominees
      • 6 Years Ago

      The F150 and Genesis will most likely win.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ford Flex? Yawn. And dat's allll I'm goin ta sa bout dat.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I say Genesis and Jetta.
        • 6 Years Ago
        i guess im wrong but shouldn't there only be one CAR of the year and one TRUCK of the year
        • 6 Years Ago
        Now, I would like to see both the Flex and the F-150 win, but my prediction is that the winners will be the Genesis and the F-150
        • 6 Years Ago
        yeah i would also say Genesis for car and F-150 for truck
        • 6 Years Ago
        I second the motion.
        • 6 Years Ago
        andy:
        Yeah you're right. wtf was I thinking? lol

        hmmm. I'd say the Genesis because it looks more awesome...er... and it's priced right... Yet the Jetta takes on the MPG's like a Prius and looks great while doing it... Hard choice, but I'm fine with either outcome. I'd probably choose the Ford F-150 as the most deserving of the TOTY award.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The Genesis should win.

      It is the prime contender for the prestigious AJAC Car of the Year in Canada. It already won the Best Luxury under $50k here.

      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't understand this Flex thing, can someone explain to me what is so good about it? I have yet to see many on the streets, and I don't understand what's so good about them. I like the styling a little bit, it seems old school, but I don't understand what is so special about it
        • 6 Years Ago
        I don't understand what's good about this comment. Can someone explain to me what's good about this comment? It's right there in black and white but I don't understand what's good about it. The words are there, but I don't understand what's good about them.
        • 6 Years Ago
        me either...its styling is ok, however ppl say it's slow... I haven't seen one on streets so far...
      • 6 Years Ago
      The Flex is on there because of its styling (ok, subjective, but it IS a fresh look), quality, and utility, for its given segment (SUV/crossover).

      But why is the X6 on there? It looks a 5 series that went on the McDonald's diet. Nothing more.
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