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Accord and Pacifica claim 2018 Canadian Car awards

Annual AJAC award winners reflect changes in the program’s judging process

Published: February 15, 2018, 4:15 AM
Updated: February 19, 2018, 3:34 AM

2018 AJAC Canadian Car of the Year Awards

TORONTO, ON – The Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) revealed its annual top vehicle award winners today at the opening ceremonies for the 2018 Canadian International Auto Show.

The Honda Accord was announced as the 2018 Canadian Car of the Year.

2018 AJAC Canadian Car of the Year Awards

The Chrysler Pacifica was named the 2018 Canadian Utility Vehicle of the Year.

The all-new Accord, which previously was named North American Car of the Year, beat out the Mazda3 and Volvo S90/V90 for the top Canadian car honours, while the Pacifica won out over the Mazda CX-5 and CX-9.

All six finalists, along with eight others, had previously been named the best vehicles in their respective categories.

Revised process

Those who pay attention to such things may note that the winning Utility vehicle, the Pacifica, as well several other finalists are not in fact new vehicles for 2018. The Pacifica was introduced in 2016 as a 2017 model and was eligible for the same award last year.

2018 AJAC Canadian Car of the Year Awards

For 2018, AJAC revised its eligibility criteria, eliminating the need for vehicles to be new to the market in the model year of the award. They need only be on the market during that period.

In addition, the long-standing practice of testing all the vehicles back-to-back at a multi-day TestFest to determine votes was abandoned in favour of year-round testing of separate vehicles by individual members.

The vehicles were scored anonymously by nearly 100 voting members on many different factors, including performance, features, technology, design, fuel consumption and value for money, and the highest scorers in each category were declared the category winners.

Those winners were then eligible for the overall awards, which were determined by a second round of voting, where jurors were asked to consider more subjective qualities, such as the levels of comfort, convenience and practical performance.

The results reflect those changes in process.