Seventy of Canada’s top automotive journalists spent one week last month in the picturesque tourist town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, but not for the scenery or the wine tasting. The journalists, all members of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC), were there for the express purpose of determining the Best New cars and SUV/CUVs in 11 different vehicle categories as part of AJAC’s annual Canadian Car of the Year Awards program.
The four days of intensive, back-to-back testing and evaluation are known in the automotive industry as “Test Fest.” The results of the journalists’ test-drive evaluations were as follows:
Best New Small Car (under $21k)—Ford Fiesta
Best New Small Car (over $21k)—Chevrolet Cruze
Best New Family Car (under $30k)—Volkswagen Jetta TDI Clean Diesel
Best New Family Car (over $30k)—Buick Regal
Best New Luxury Car (over $50k)—BMW 5 Series Sedan
Best New Prestige Car (over $75k)—Porsche 911 Turbo S
Best New Sports/Performance Car—Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
Best New Minivan—Toyota Sienna
Best New SUV/CUV (under $35k)—Hyundai Tucson
Best New SUV/CUV ($35k-$50k)—Ford Edge
Best New SUV/CUV (over $50k)—Volkswagen Touareg.
The results were compiled by the international accounting firm, KPMG and kept confidential even from AJAC until they were announced at a press conference on October 29. More than 40,000 individual data points established in the testing of 144 different vehicles determined the list of winners.