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As we head into the final weeks of yet another year, that means it's time for everyone to pick out their favorites. In this business that means its time to select cars, trucks and SUVs of the year. Over at Popular Mechanics, the editors have put together a list of vehicles that they feel exemplify excellence based on a number of characteristics. For example, the list opens up with what they consider the most off-road capable – a likely easy choice this year with the launch of the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor.

The technical innovation prize went to the new Remote Touch System that appeared in the Lexus HS 250h and RX this year. This joystick control provides haptic feedback when the cursor hits a selection button on the screen. As a result it's not as fiddly as a conventional joystick might be, allowing the driver to keep more attention on the road. Check out the full list of automotive excellence at Popular Mechanics's web site.

[Source: Popular Mechanics]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't know if the Raptor is the most capable off-roader (that has to be proved) BUT, it doesn't have to be to belong on this list.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks like they made up their minds before they did any kind of tests... I mean, how can you say that the SVT Raptor is the most capable off-road compared to, say, a Land Rover or Jeep? And the best luxury car is a 335d??? Seriously? This is kind of why I stopped subscribing to Popular Mechanics years ago.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The category is for "NEW" vehicles for this year and the Raptor was best "High-Speed" off-road capable truck for the year. You must admit, the Raptor is indeed one awesome truck and deserving of the award and just gets better when the 6.2L Boss V8 comes available in a few months...
        • 5 Years Ago
        These are usually 'of the year' type things. And they did drive the cars they chose.

        They drove the new 335d and liked it. The diesel is quiet at highway speeds and very torquey. So 'best' luxury vehicle of the year? I can see it.

        And c'mon... like anyone driving the Raptor hasn't said it kicks ass off road. So long as they've never had more fun off-road, they get to use the subjective term 'best' all they like.
        • 5 Years Ago
        OK, well, guess what..? There is a brand new Land Rover LR4 out this year, and I'm pretty sure it is by far the better off-roader.
      JDM Life
      • 5 Years Ago
      Love the HS.

      Saw one downtown blacked out. Looked very good and other people was looking at it also.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I guess they mean the most capable off-roader among the carstrucks launched this year. It is a car of the year award not an all times award.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Off topic but, ever wondered that the Raptor looks awesome when dirty, and not so good-looking when clean?

      I think this is a good enough excuse not to wash the car. :P
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm a die hard Ford guy and love the Raptor (who would have guessed that "coincidence"?) and to me, yea I think it deserved its title of "most off-road capable".

      Sure the Land Rover can do it all to, but I think the Range Rover and Raptor attract totally different kinds of off-road enthusiasts. Firstly, If I had an $80,000 dollar Range Rover, I wouldn't want to take it off Road. The dang things to expensive!! Replacing parts would be like paying mortgage to a $100,000 house. That's why I think the Lexus LX models (The more expensive brother of Toyota's Landcruiser) is a waste. Yea, its bad ass, but ye-ouch on that price tag.

      The Raptor is a more affordable (yet still pricey) off- road vehicle. Ford enthusiasts know that 5.4 is a tough "SOB" and trust it, and the sound of that 6.2 makes you smile! Plus this truck has a TON of awesome features that you MUST respect!
      Link for the Raptor... http://www.fordvehicles.com/f150raptor/

      And it does NOT compete with the "Ram Power Wagon", which to me is the one that competes more with the Range Rover. The Ram Power Wagon, Range Rover, Land Cruiser are all great, but there more rock climbing, hill climbing, things where your speed stays low, the Raptor is more of a BA-HA kinda vehicle. High speeds, sand dunes, going air born... just reminds me of say Nissan's NISMO package.