Friday, September 30, 2022
Home MICHIGAN Z06, V-8s and EVs take prizes

Z06, V-8s and EVs take prizes

Detroit — The Detroit auto show floor is awash in whispery-quiet new electric vehicles, but show-goers still covet American heavy metal.

Muscle cars dominated the annual Detroit News Readers’ Choice awards at Huntington Place this year. The high-revving, 670-horsepower, V8-powered Chevy Corvette Z06 took home Best in Show, while the rowdy Ford Bronco Raptor — inspired by King of the Hammers racing trucks — won best Off-Road Warrior.

Ford’s focus on its iconic vehicles — Mustang, Bronco, F-150 — has received a lot of buzz, and that was reflected in jurors’ selections as Ford took home the most prizes, winning four of the nine categories. The Blue Oval’s luxury division, Lincoln, also took home Top Concept for good measure.

The Readers’ Choice Awards are prized by automakers for their status as the Detroit show’s only awards judged by car buyers themselves. Nearly 100 jurors were let loose on the show floor during the Sept. 14 media day to make their selections.

The 2023 Corvette Z06 had already caught the eye of President Joe Biden when he toured the show, and News’ readers found the orange supercar irresistible as well. The eighth-generation, $65,895 Corvette C8 is the iconic nameplate’s first mid-engine model — and much more affordable than comparable mid-engine exotics from Ferrari and McLaren. The Z06 is the C8’s first performance version featuring the most-powerful normally-aspirated V-8 production engine ever made.

That performance will cost customers another 40 grand over the base car — and for that, The News’ jurors awarded the Z06 the prize for If Money Were No Object.

The Lincoln L100 was the Readers' Choice winner as Top Concept.

The North American International Auto Show has traditionally showcased head-turning concepts, and 2022 was no different. In perhaps the biggest surprise of the Readers’ Choice Awards, the Lincoln L100 Concept edged out the much-hyped Dodge Charger Daytona Banshee — a peek at the brand’s first EVs — and Buick Wildcat as best concept.

The sci-fi L100 is Lincoln’s vision of an autonomous vehicle future with no steering wheel or pedals (a “chess piece” is provided on an electronic pad to override the car’s self-driving if needed) and front seats that can swivel to face rear passengers. The chariot boasts other exotic features like a glass canopy roof, glass “frunk” and hub-mounted electric motors.

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