Mazda scores big in annual car awards

Mazda picked up three awards at Toronto’s Canadian International Auto Show Feb. 13.

Among these, Mazda 6 won 2014 Canadian Car of the Year from the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada and the “Best New Family Car over $30,000.” Mazda also picked up two awards in the new small car category.

The Jeep Cherokee was voted Canadian Utility Vehicle of the Year.

Canadian Car of the Year 2014 Winners

The winners for each of the 12 categories are:

  • Best New Small Car (under $21,000) – Mazda 3
  • Best New Small Car (over $21,000) – Mazda 3 Sport
  • Best New Family Car (under $30,000) – Kia Soul
  • Best New Family Car (over $30,000) – Mazda 6
  • Best New Luxury Car (under $50,000) – Lexus IS 350 RWD
  • Best New Luxury Car (over $50,000) – Infiniti Q50 Hybrid
  • Best New Prestige Car – Mercedes-Benz S Class
  • Best New Sports/Performance Car (over $50,000) – Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
  • Best New SUV/CUV (under $35,000) – Jeep Cherokee
  • Best New SUV/CUV ($35,000 – $60,000) – Kia Sorento
  • Best New SUV/CUV (over $60,000) – Acura MDX
  • Best New Pickup – GMC Sierra

The Mazda 6

Testing the vehicles

The winners in each category are chosen at TestFest, an annual event held by the AJAC. Each test team tests each car in its category. The tests run over four days and journalists evaluate over 180 models.

“These tests occur back-to-back, on the same roads, under the same conditions to ensure objective evaluation,” the AJAC says.

The tests rank each vehicle on 21 separate parameters such as acceleration, breaking, vehicle dynamics, and manoeuvrability. The testers give each vehicle a score from one to 10 on a secret ballot.

The AJAC began the Canadian Car of the Year Awards to “to provide consumers with sound, comparative information on vehicles that are new to the market.”

The influence these awards have on consumers is growing according to the AJAC, with more buyers placing more value on the rankings every year. In 1999 the awards had a 45 per cent influence on consumers, in 2005 the influence on consumers rose to 58 per cent.

Candian Car of the Year winners timeline

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