TORONTO—The Honda Civic has been declared the 2016 Canadian Car of the Year (CCOTY) by the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC).
The Honda Civic also won in its category as the “Best New Small Car.”
“On behalf of the thousands of Honda associates across the country including the more than 4000 at our HCM facility who lead global production of The 10th generation Civic, I’d like to thank AJAC for this award,” said Jerry Chenkin, president of Honda Canada Inc.
The group also announced the Mazda CX-3 compact SUV has won 2016 Canadian Utility Vehicle of the Year.
“Being chosen over the very worthy competition we faced is a strong endorsement of everything the CX-3 brings to the table: show-stopping KODO design, excellent real-world fuel efficiency thanks to SKYACTIV Technology, and all-we ather capability with Mazda’s predictive i-ACTIV AWD system,” said Vincent Reboul, director of marketing for Mazda Canada.
Both announcements came in an early morning press conference at the opening of the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto, which runs from Feb 12 to Feb 21 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
The vehicles were chosen from nine “Best New” category winners that were announced on Nov. 24, 2015.
Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz were double winners. Other category winners included Chevrolet, Honda, Kia, Mazda, and Volvo. The nine “Best New” categories cover the full new-model spectrum, including
“Best New Small Car,” “Best New Family Car,” and “Best New SUV/CUV.”
Most mainstream categories are further divided by price, such as over or under $35,000, to better provide fair and relevant comparison.
The category winners represent the voting results by the largest group of Canada’s best-known automotive journalists, who gathered last October in Clarington, Ont. for a four-day test-drive evaluation of brand-new or significantly changed models.
The event, known as “TestFest,” was hosted by Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, and Shell Canada was the official fuel supplier.
“TestFest is the most intensive new-vehicle evaluation process on the planet,” said Gary Grant, co-chair of the Canadian Car of the Year committee.
“No other organization employs such stringent testing methods to determine its award winners.”
The rigorous testing program includes real-world driving on public roads, exactly where consumers drive, so the test data and vote results are directly relevant to potential car and utility vehicle
buyers. The results are not based on the personal opinion of just one or two journalists. Instead, 71 automotive journalists each drove vehicles in their categories back-to-back on the same day, under the same conditions, to ensure fair and objective comparisons.
“Our program is absolutely testing-based,” said Justin Pritchard, co-chair of the Canadian Car of the Year committee. “We have experienced vehicle testers driving dozens of vehicles, back to back, over the course of several days. This testing process generated 1,911 test drives, producing over 110,000 data points and 1701 category ballots.”