The entertainment and auto industries are a lot alike. They both thrive on innovation, they both love a new face, and they both have a deep, abiding passion for awards ceremonies.
So now, as the film and music worlds inch toward awards show season, it's only appropriate that the crop of vehicles vying for the title of 2016 North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year has been thinned out.
At a ceremony held today, the Chevrolet Malibu, the Honda Civic, and the Mazda MX-5 Miata were named Car of the Year finalists for 2016.
Finalists for the 2016 Truck/Utility of the Year are the Honda Pilot, the Nissan Titan XD, and the Volvo XC90.
Unlike many other automotive awards, which are often given by a single media outlet, the NACTOY awards are chosen by an independent jury of automotive journalists from the U.S. and Canada. (Fun fact: our own Marty Padgett, Bengt Halvorson, John Voelcker, and Kirk Bell are on this year's jury.)
Earlier in the fall, those jurors announced a short list of 10 cars and 12 trucks and utilities that were up for nods this year:
2016 North American Car of the Year Short List
BMW 7 Series
Mazda MX-5 Miata
2016 North American Truck/Utility of the Year Short List
Nissan Titan XD
Tesla Model X
All of those vehicles are either new or substantially updated, and all will go on sale before January 31. Jurors consider a number of factors in identifying cars, trucks, and utilities for the short list, including design, safety, handling, and value.
More recently, jurors cast votes to determine the three vehicles in each category that they found most worthy of recognition. That's resulted in the list of six finalists announced today.
A third and final ballot will decide the winners of the 2016 North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year awards, which will be revealed in January at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.