2005 International Car of the Year Awards & Winners
those living on the edge of new car excitement, 2005 became a very good year.
An explosion of technology, of tantalizing design and multifaceted purpose met
every seeming taste and need. The code word for admission into the vehicle ranks
was "variety," as everything from punchy little mini cars and multipurpose
crossbreeds competed for road turf with hulking heavyweights.
& TRAVEL Magazine watched the procession of new auto and truck models grow
more versatile and lively year after year, as nine varieties went head-to-head
for top bragging rights. In its annual quest for the very best, RTM honored those
that rose above the pack for their ability to capture the essence of purpose,
style and performance. Since it all began, dozens of vehicles have won the magazine's
coveted honors decided by a panel of distinguished automotive and lifestyle journalists.
A few of those models rose to the pinnacle of praise.
designed for 2005 continued the trend, as RTM launched its
9th consecutive awards search amid a packed Detroit
Marriott Renaissance Hotel ballroom of potential victors.
There were so many in fact, the winners' circle was expanded
and, for the first time, judges not only chose an International
Car of the Year, but added a first-ever honoree as International
Truck of the Year.
who crafted the tantalizing advertisements that smacked us to attention and tugged
at our sensibilities weren't overlooked for 2005. Presentation won a niche of
its own in an entirely new category, the HEART STRING Award for the most-compelling
car commercial. The first award winner: Ford Mustang's "Cornfield" TV
spot created by J. Walter Thompson superimposed with legendary actor Steve McQueen.
And, again, accomplishment was honored as RTM handed out its second auto industry
Lifetime Achievement Award in two years. Honored for 2005 was Forbes Magazines'
Jerry Flint, renowned major-domo of American auto journalists for decades.
presentations for 2005 were made under the sparkling lights and musical rush of
a black-tie gala, sometimes referred to as the "Academy Awards of Detroit,"
that again kicked off the annual North American International Auto Show. The show,
held every January at the Detroit
Marriott Renaissance Hotel, has become the premiere stage among the select
group of the world's top vehicle expositions and draws more international industry
celebrities and media attention than any other.
round after round of applause filled the ballroom and beaming participants gripped
hands in congratulations, RTM's annual awards were handed out breaking the built-up
suspense. Winning as International Car of the Year was the Chrysler 300C sedan.
Honorable mentions went to the Cadillac STS and Ford Mustang. GM's Hummer H2 SUT
took the first-ever International Truck of the Year honors, with the Land Rover
LR3 and Nissan Pathfinder receiving honorable mentions.
among respective categories: Luxury Car - Most Respected, Jaguar XJ LWB; Crossover/Wagon
- Most Versatile, Dodge Magnum; Sedan - Most Dependable, Subaru Legacy 2.5i Sedan;
Minivan/Life Stage - Most Compatible, Chrysler Town & Country with Stow n'
Go; Sports Car - Most Sex Appeal, Chevy Corvette; Pickup Truck - Most Athletic,
Ford F-Series Super Duty 4X4; SUV - Most Resourceful, Land Rover LR3; and Entry-Level
- Most Spirited, MINI Cooper Convertible.
the awards celebration, filmed for a one-hour CBS Detroit television special to
air January 14-16, was a star-studded list of civic and political leaders and
top movers and shakers from inside and outside the industry. They added a high-profile
aura to the vehicle stars of the show.
included U.S. Congressman John D. Dingell; Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick; Detroit's
Chief of Police, Ella M. Bully-Cummings; Kunio Ishigami, Chairman, President &
CEO of Subaru of America; Kathleen Ligocki, CEO of Tower Automotive; Irma Elder,
CEO of Elder Automotive Group; Nick Scheele, President of Ford Motor Company;
Tom LaSorda, COO of DaimlerChrysler Corporation; Tom Shaver, Partner of J.D. Power
& Associates and recording artist and radio personality, Alexander Zonjic.
for the gala awards ceremony read like a "Who's Who" in the world of
motion, action and prestige. Supporting the 9th annual event were Shell Oil Products
US, Bridgestone/Firestone NA Tire, Dolby Laboratories, Ford Motor Company, General
Motors Corporation, Detroit
Marriott Renaissance Center Hotel, Hyundai Motor America, OnStar, American
Honda Motor Company, BMW NA, Bose Corporation, DaimlerChrylser Corporation, GMAC
Financial Services, Nissan North America, U-Haul International, Google, Tower
Automotive, and ArvinMeritor, Inc. This year's media sponsor was MSN Autos, which
provides post-event coverage with its post-event shows.
members for 2005 include: Denise McCluggage, columnist and senior-contributing
editor for Auto Week; Ken Gross, contributing editor for Robb Report; Ann Job,
new car test driver for the Associated Press and MSN Autos; Warren Brown, auto
editor, Washington Post; BJ Killeen, president of Motor Mouth Productions; John
McElroy, host of Autoline Detroit; Kathy Jackson, reporter for Automotive News;
Alex Law, contributing editor, Car & Driver; Cheryl Jensen, automotive contributor
to The New York Times and Chicago Tribune; Bob Plunkett, syndicated automotive
columnist; Perry Stern, editor for MSN Autos and RTM editor-in-chief, Courtney
ensure the utmost credibility and validity of each win J.D. Power and Associates
officially tabulated all 2005 ICOTY votes.
with the secrets finally out, we invite you to read on and share the excitement
of this year's ICOTY winners.