The top three finalists for the coveted North American Truck/Utility of the Year award have been announced, and this year there is another pickup truck in the mix. Last year the Ram 1500 won the award as the only all new pickup in a diverse group that included vans, crossovers and SUVs.
This year the top three vote getters were the Acura MDX, Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and Jeep Cherokee. The 2014 North American Car and Truck/Utility awards are determined by a group of 48 U.S. and Canadian auto journalists who make two separate cuts from all qualifying vehicles. This year 28 cars and 18 "truck/utilities" qualified in their respective categories. Each group was cut down to 12 vehicles in September, then down to three this week. The three pickups that made it past the first cut were the Toyota Tundra, GMC Sierra 1500 and the Silverado 1500. Oddly, the Ram 2500 Heavy Duty, which offers a revolutionary new coil-spring rear suspension, an impressively redesigned front suspension and an all-new multidisplacement 6.4-liter Hemi V-8, did not even make the first cut. Although the Jeep and Acura are impressive vehicles, our favorite is the Silverado.
The winner of the award will be announced Jan. 13 during the first press conference of the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The three qualifying cars are the Chevy Corvette Stingray, Cadillac CTS and Mazda3.