The North American International Auto Show is the traditional venue for the announcement of the recipients of the North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year award.
For the 2016 model year, the big winners are two brands that actually don’t have their DNA rooted in North America: Japan’s Honda and Sweden’s Volvo. As such, the winners for the two categories were the Honda Civic compact and Volvo XC90 crossover utility vehicle. First off we have the all new generation of the public favorite passenger car from the compact class – the Civic’s all new sedan and coupe versions managed to trump the cards presented by the Chevrolet Malibu and Mazda MX-5 in order to snatch the top ranking position. The sedan was first shown last year in September and has won accolades from both fans and critics. The model comes packing a base 2.0-liter four-cylinder that delivers 158 horsepower and 138 pound-feet of torque and the feistier turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine comes with 174 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque.
The Truck/Utility was won over by the second generation of the Volvo XC90, which managed to position itself in front of the runner-ups: the Honda Pilot and Nissan Titan XD. While the Civic taking home the prize is just a confirmation of the new generations credentials, for Volvo this award is a major revelation as this is their first all new vehicle in years and the first one to use the SPA architecture that will underpin the vast majority of the range in the near future.