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Here Are Your Contenders for 2016 North American Car, Truck/Utility of the Year

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New Chevrolet Volt electric car

Another year, another North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year award ceremony, and we have the contenders for you.

On the cars side, we have the all-new, 2016 BMW 7-Series, 2016 Cadillac CT6, 2016 Chevrolet Camaro, 2016 Chevrolet Malibu, 2016 Chevrolet Volt, 2016 Honda Civic sedan, 2016 Kia Optima, 2016 Mazda Miata MX-5, 2016 Nissan Maxima, and 2016 Toyota Prius. A very strong list, if you ask me…

The models running for the Truck/Utility of the Year award are the new Tesla Model X, Ford Edge, Volvo XC90, Honda HR-V, Honda Pilot, Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sorento, Jeep Renegade, Lexus RX, Mazda CX-3, Nissan Titan XD and Toyota Tacoma.

Which car and truck do you have as your top picks?

If the list looks long, don’t worry, it will eventually be narrowed down by 57 jurors to just three finalists in each category. The two winners are announced at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show.

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Awards

Buick Avista is Concept Car of the Year, Most Significant Concept of 2016

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Red Buick Avista Concept

The Buick Avista Concept is still being talked about long after its debut at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show. In fact, so enamored are auto critics by the two-door Buick’s striking, eye-catching design that it was named Concept Car of the Year and Most Significant Concept Vehicle of 2016 at the 2016 North American Concept Vehicle Awards ceremony held at Concours d’Elegance of America.

The awards recognize one vehicle that made the strongest impact in terms of automotive design, engineering and market responsiveness.

More than just a one-off eye-candy, the Avista not only celebrates Buick’s “deep design heritage” but also previews the brand’s future design direction. Bryan Nesbitt, executive director of Buick Global Design, had the following to say:

“The design process of the Avista brought the team together to unite around a future direction for the brand and the great teamwork and enthusiasm it generated. While looking to the future, we also wanted to honor the rich heritage of Buick by integrating timeless design cues in this beautifully progressive concept vehicle.”

The Avista was praised for its futuristic interior and intuitive design, with Detroit Free Press auto critic Mark Phelan saying it “cements Buick’s surprising status as one of the auto industry’s most intriguing brands.”

In addition to being named Concept Car of the Year and Most Significant Concept Vehicle of 2016, the gorgeous coupe also received the EyesOn Design Excellence and “Best Future Concept” awards following its introduction at the North American International Auto Show.

Is the Buick Avista deserving of all these awards or is there a better choice? Make sure to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Awards

Here Are the North American Car and Truck of the Year Finalists

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2015 Volkswagen Golf TSI, blue

With the 2015 Detroit Auto Show just around the corner, the finalists for the coveted North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year competition have been announced.

In contention for the North American Car of the Year award are the new Ford Mustang, Hyundai Genesis and Volkswagen Golf. As for the North American Truck/Utility of the Year, you have the redesigned Chevrolet Colorado, aluminum-body Ford F-150 and new Lincoln MKC battling it out for the top spot.

It’s a tough crowd in both categories and it would be interesting to see which vehicles are selected as the winners come January 12, 2015.

RELATED STORY: New Chevrolet Colorado Wins Motor Trend 2015 Truck of the Year

Considering that the Volkswagen Golf and Chevrolet Colorado won Motor Trend’s car and truck of the year awards, respectively, are they the most likely candidates to drive away the victors? Do let us know which car and truck you think deserve to be crowned.

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Awards

BMW i8 Hybrid Sports Car is Top Gear Car of the Year

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BMW i8 hybrid

Top Gear magazine has named the BMW i8 as their Car of the Year — the German hybrid sports car has many smitten the world over.

“The BMW is a milestone in the annals of automotive history and a glorious statement for an exciting and positive future,” the British magazine’s editor-in-chief, Charlie Turner, . “It’s the kind of car we should celebrate, a beautiful vision of the future, delivered now.”

MUST READ: Details Emerge on Sportier, More Powerful BMW i8S

As a reminder, the i8 is powered by a plug-in hybrid powertrain consisting of a 1.5-liter TwinPower Turbo three-cylinder engine and an electric motor energized by a lithium-ion battery. It produces a combined output of 362 horsepower and accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.4 seconds on route to a limited top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph).

Thanks to its hybrid system, the i8 delivers an impressive average fuel economy (for a sports car of its size) of 2.1 L/100 km (134.5 mpg UK / 112 mpg US) and can travel up to 37 km (23 miles) on electric power alone.

American car-hating Jeremy Clarkson had his own Car of the Year — the Chevrolet Corvette Z06! — which he praised for its speed and seemingly unmatched value. As for James May and Richard Hammond, they chose the Ferrari LaFerrari and Porsche 918, respectively. No McLaren P1…

Is the BMW i8 deserving of Top Gear magazine’s Car of the Year or is there a more worthy vehicle? Let us know in the comments.

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