The Cadillac ATS beat out such contenders as Ford Fusion and Honda Accord to be named 2013 North American Car of the Year at the Detroit Auto Show by a panel of 49 automotive journalists from the US and Canada, based on its “innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.” The panel also gave 2013 Truck of the Year honors to the Ram 1500.
The achievement is a first for Cadillac and GM's fifth car of the year award. It also marks the 13th time that domestic carmakers have claimed the North American Truck of the Year award.
"This is a very meaningful honor for the entire Cadillac team, especially the men and women who build the ATS in Lansing, Michigan, and our dedicated and talented designers and engineers," Bob Ferguson, GM vice president, global Cadillac, said in a statement. "A car like ATS is the result of incredible commitment and focus. That's the only method for creating a great performing luxury car."
All in all seven automakers had multiple nominees for the awards, led by Ford Motor Co. with four: the Ford Fusion, Escape and C-Max and the Lincoln MKZ. Nissan North America had three: the Nissan Altima and Pathfinder and the Infiniti JX35.
Additional vehicles vying for the honor also included Chevrolet Malibu, Toyota Avalon and Scion FR-S, Chrysler's Dodge Dart, the Honda Accord and Acura RDX and BMW's 3 series and X1, as well as the Subaru BRZ, Mazda CX-5, Hyundai Santa Fe and Audi Allroad.
Last year’s winners were Honda’s for North American Car of TheYear, while the Land Rover Evoque nabbed the truck award.