October 08 2014, 401 Dixie Mazda


The twelve "Best New" categories cover the full new-model spectrum, including "Best New Small Car," "Best New Luxury Car," and "Best New SUV/CUV."   Most mainstream categories are further divided by price, such as over or under $35,000, to better provide a fair and relevant comparison. The top three finalists by category are copied below.

The category finalists represent the vote results by the largest group of Canada's best-known automotive journalists, who recently gathered in Niagara Falls, Ontario for a five-day test-drive evaluation of brand-new or significantly changed vehicle models. The event, known as "TestFest," was hosted by the Niagara Parks Commission, and Shell Canada is the official fuel supplier.

The vote results are not the personal opinion of just one journalist. Rather, they are based on a combination of objective data and evaluation by 80 journalists of 174 vehicles. Each journalist drives vehicles in a category back-to-back on the same day, under the same conditions, on closed and public roads, so as to ensure consumer relevance.

Every detail, from safety features to cargo capacity, is thoroughly scrutinized and individually rated by secret ballot. Over 40,000 data fields are generated by the journalists. KPMG then tabulates the information from the ballots in order to determine the winners.  The vote results are kept confidential - even from AJAC - until announced publicly.

The journalists' evaluations are combined to select a winner in each of the twelve categories. The winners are:

Best New Small Car (under $21k)

Best New Small Car (over $21k)
Mazda3 Sport

Best New Family Car (under $30k)
Kia Soul

Best New Family Car (over $30k)

Best New Luxury Car (under $50k)
Lexus IS 350 RWD

Best New Luxury Car (over $50k)
Infiniti Q50 Hybrid

Best New Sports/Performance
Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

Best New Prestige Car 
Mercedes-Benz S Class

Best New SUV/CUV (under $35k)
Jeep Cherokee

Best New SUV/CUV ($35k to $60k)
Kia Sorento

Best New SUV/CUV (over $60k)
Acura MDX

GMC Sierra

The vote results and comparative data will be posted to the AJAC website this week. The comparative data is criteria driven and based on Canadian expertise.   Consumers are urged to use the data as a resource buying guide, at no charge, when shopping for a new vehicle.  Look for the results under Vote Results and also New Vehicle Data - Criteria Driven - Canadian Expertise on our web site (ajac.ca).

The twelve category winners now go on to compete for the top honour of being either the 2014 Canadian Car of the Year or the 2014 Canadian Utility Vehicle of the Year. The overall winners will be declared on Thursday, February 13, 2014, at the beginning of media day at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto.

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