Anyone can give out a Car of the Year award these days. In fact, the list of COTY awards seems to grow every year. There’s the old stalwart, the Motor Trend Car of the Year, but there’s also the North American Car and Truck of the Year, the World Car of the Year, and now the Popular Mechanics Car of the Year. Perhaps there should be an equally prestigious “tgriffith Car of the Year.”
Maybe there will be.
With such a wide variety of awards, it’s pretty hard to label the one true Car of the Year. In this era of “everyone’s a winner,” every car has some chance of winning some kind of award.
Motor Trend, though, seems to have nailed this year’s choice.
In it’s announcement of this year’s winner, MT says,
The 2013 Motor Trend Car of the Year is one of the quickest American four-doors ever built. It drives like a sports car, eager and agile and instantly responsive. But it’s also as smoothly effortless as a Rolls-Royce, can carry almost as much stuff as a Chevy Equinox, and is more efficient than a Toyota Prius. Oh, and it’ll sashay up to the valet at a luxury hotel like a supermodel working a Paris catwalk. By any measure, the Tesla Model S is a truly remarkable automobile, perhaps the most accomplished all-new luxury car since the original Lexus LS 400. That’s why it’s our 2013 Car of the Year.
And that’s why a car should win.
Conversely, the Model S doesn’t even show up on the short list of the North American COTY nominations. The 2012 World COTY award went to the Volkswagen Up!. And the Popular Mechanics Car of the Year choice?
Okay, that’s cool, but I tend to believe a Car of the Year should be more than a great car. It should inspire other great cars. It should set a new standard and define, or redefine, a category. The Model S will do those things.
If I were picking a Car of the Year, I’d choose the Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S twins for partnering to bring back the affordable RWD sports car, and for laying the groundwork for the possible return of the Toyota Supra and MR2.
Because that’s what a Car of the Year should do.
If you were to give a 2012 Car of the Year award, which vehicle would win?