DETROIT—South Korean car maker Hyundai Motor Co. hit it big at this year's North American International Auto Show, earning North American car and utility vehicle of the year honors for its Genesis G70 and Hyundai Kona/Kona EV, respectively.
Fiat Chrysler Automobile's Ram 1500 earned the truck of the year honors, as voted on by a jury of 54 U.S. and Canadian automotive journalists.
The Hyundai Kona beat out the Acura RDX and Jaguar I-Pace in the utility vehicle category in the category's fourth year—previously crossovers, SUVs and minivans competed in the truck category. It's also the first time two electric vehicles—the Jaguar I-Pace and Hyundai Kona—competed in the mix.
The Genesis G70 beat the Honda Insight and Volvo S60. This is the second win in the car category for Hyundai Motor Group, which won with the Hyundai Genesis in 2009. In 2017, its G90 was a finalist but lost to the Chevrolet Bolt.
The Ram 1500 surpassed the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and the GMC Sierra 1500. Only three vehicles were eligible for the truck segment, so by default, all three became finalists.
Vehicles are judged on several categories including innovation, design, safety, performance, technology, value and driver satisfaction. Winners were selected in a third elimination stage.
A vehicle must have been redesigned or significantly changed to be eligible for the award. Even though the Silverado, Sierra and Ram were all redesigned this year, the media lavishly praised the Ram for its interior. The Ram has not earned the finalist status since 2013, when the model took home the truck category win.