Today at the LA International Auto Show, as they do each year, Motor Trend held a press conference to announce their 2012 “Car of the Year.” Its hard to say how many people were expecting the Volkswagen Passat, but it certainly was not an obvious choice, nor was the choice the result of a mere popularity contest. Much like when Ban Ki-moon was selected as Secretary general of the UN, the Volkswagen Passat is by no means a rock star, but rather is a solid leader because it is a solid worker, reliable and practical.
The American-made, new-for-2012, Volkswagen Passat edged out contenders from Europe, Japan and America to take this year’s award from a record field of 35 all-new, or thoroughly redesigned, 2012 model year vehicles. Car of the Year candidates were subjected to an exhaustive evaluation process that included the full complement of Motor Trend performance tests, track-based ride and handling evaluations, and real-world driving on city streets, freeways and two-lane roads.
“The well-equipped Passat is a breakthrough car for Volkswagen, as it has been designed to suit the North American market and is being built in a brand-new, state-of-the-art assembly plant in Chattanooga, Tenn.,” said Motor Trend Editor-in-Chief, Angus MacKenzie. “It has one of the roomiest interiors in its class, a wide choice of powertrains and a well-tuned chassis. A compelling new entry in the toughest, most competitive vehicle segment in the U.S. today, it’s a terrific all-around family sedan.”
For more than six decades, the editorial staff of Motor Trend has met to determine the best new car for the following model year. The Car of the Year process is not a comparison test; the winning vehicle is the one that, in the judges’ opinion, best fulfills six key criteria: Advancement in Design, Engineering Excellence, Efficiency, Safety, Value and Performance of Intended Function.
Phoenix Valley auto and tech enthusiasts should seriously consider taking a road trip out to Los Angeles in late November for the LA Auto Show, a popular platform for the worlds leaders in design, engineering, and electronics to debut their most cutting edge concepts and developments.
Phoenix Valley auto enthusiasts should also plan on attending the Phoenix Arizona International Auto Show to learn about the most recent concepts and innovations from Volkswagen, as well as the rest of the auto industry, taking place at the Phoenix Arizona Convention center over Thanksgiving weekend.