Sunday, 15 September, 2019

Genesis G70, Hyundai Kona win coveted awards at Detroit auto show

The 2019 Genesis G70 the North American Car of the Year Nadine Fillion  Driving The 2019 Genesis G70 the North American Car of the Year Nadine Fillion Driving
Rhonda Young | 16 January, 2019, 18:27

The 2019 North American International Auto Show is underway in Detroit, and Hyundai is this year's big victor.

This year's vehicle finalists also included the Honda Insight and Volvo S60/V60.

The Kona beat fellow finalists the Acura RDX and Jaguar I-Pace.

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Kona was the first Hyundai compact utility vehicle model to win in the utility vehicle of the year category. Reid Bigland, CEO of the Ram brand, said the judges appreciated the reworked 1500 pickup, including its electric assist system for better gas mileage, a 12-inch infotainment touch screen and "the bold look of our exterior, the refinements on the interior, the ride, the handling".

It was good news, and bad news for the local automakers.

"Ram continues to lead the way in making a big truck double as a big family pleaser with as much attention paid to interior conveniences and ride comfort as to cargo hauling and towing", said John Davis, executive producer at MotorWeek.

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While the awards are announced at Detroit auto show, the prizes are independent of the show itself. To be eligible, vehicles must be "all new" or "substantially changed".

According to the auto of the Year guidelines, the awards recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar. The process began in June 2018 by determining vehicle eligibility and included three rounds of voting.

Hyundai will have a lot to brag about in those commercials thanks to the awards given to Genesis, its new luxury brand created in 2015 to compete against lines like Toyota's Lexus and Volkswagen's Audi. Hyundai Motor is the fourth automaker in the history of the awards, now in their 26th year, to nab two honors in a given year, after Honda in 2006, Ford in 2010 and Chevrolet in 2014.

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