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21 Detroit Auto Show: Honda, Lincoln, Volvo win North American car, truck, SUV of the year

Monday - 15/01/2018 20:38
Volvo, Honda and Lincoln took home some hardware for vehicle of the year at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. USA TODAY

DETROIT — The Honda Accord, a midsize car that underwent a big revision last year that impressed auto critics, was awarded the auto industry's most highly sought honor on Monday — North American Car of the Year.

The Lincoln Navigator won Truck of the Year and the Volvo XC60 is SUV of the Year as the awards were announced at the North American International Auto Show here.

The Navigator also is an SUV, but in a year in which there were no new strong competitors among pickups, it won based on its truck-like towing ability, the president of the jury, Mark Phelan of the Detroit Free Press, said in a blog post.

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Though the Accord has been around the decades, the new version, introduced last year, wowed. Honda sold 322,655 of both the older and the new model last year, down 6.5% compared with 2016 amid a general decline in car sales, according to sales tracker Autodata. Accord has a starting price of $23,570.

It arrives with lots of nice interior appointments and the biggest trunk in a segment.

"Honda took a clean-sheet approach to reinventing America's most popular car, and we couldn't be prouder to receive this honor for Accord as the North American Car of the Year," said Henio Arcangeli, Jr., general manager of Honda sales for American Honda Motor.

The new Accord also won attention for its engine changes, including its first turbocharged version. The 192-horsepower, 1.5-liter 4-cylinder motor delivers 33 mpg in combined city and highway driving. There's also 252-horsepower, 2-liter 4-cylinder engine.

Standard features include adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow, traffic sign recognition, lane keeping assist, forward collision alert and automatic braking

Lincoln, which heavily promoted its new Navigator at a time when big SUVs are popular again, was thrilled about winning the award.

"This is such great news," said Amy Marentic, president of Lincoln China.

The comfortable and luxurious Navigator, with a base price of $72,055, features touches such as 30-way adjustable seats and laser-etched wood trim. The Lincoln badge on the grille lights up a soft blue-white when the car is running. Lincoln sold 10,523 of them last year.

The XC60 won for bringing high-end safety and driver assistance features to a midsize luxury vehicle, not just a flagship model. It's larger corporate sibling, the XC90, won in 2016.

The SUV, which seats five, has a starting price of $41,500. Volvo sold 22,690 of them last year, a 10.9% improvement from the previous year, according to Autodata.

Anders Gustafsson, senior vice president Americas Volvo Car Group, stands in front of the 2018 Volvo XC60 as he shows off the award for the North American Utility Vehicle of the Year at the North American International Auto Show. (Photo: Jose Juarez, AP)

“We are so proud the XC60 has won this prestigious award,” Anders Gustafsson, CEO of Volvo Cars USA, said in a statement. “It is a very tough competition and we thank all the judges for recognizing the great style, technology, and engineering in the XC60."

 Key: Honda, Volvo, Lincoln

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