Automobile Magazine Picks Best and Worst for 2010
Here are some highlights from the list that touches on winning automakers and brands, genres (as in crossovers and small cars) and individuals vehicles like the Chevrolet Camaro and the Mini Clubman. Odds are good you can guess the winner and the loser of those two. The complete list (and it is worth reading) is available at AutomobileMag.com.
- Hyundai (winner) - The haters may still have trouble giving credit where it’s due, but consumers are finding no such hindrance. By the end of November, Hyundai had already broken its all-time annual sales record, so December is just icing on the cake. The same company that just launched a new top-tier luxury car in (Equus) is also on a mission to meet the 35 mpg CAFE goal before it’s even official, and has a string of new cars lined up for the 2011 auto shows to help build on its success.
- Suzuki (loser) - If any company deserves to catch a break, it’s Suzuki. Canceling the underwhelming Reno and Forenza was a good thing, but it wreaked havoc on its sales charts. The Kizashi is one of the best midsize sedans on the market, but no one knows it exists. While 2011 is looking like a better year, it’s a very long road Suzuki must travel.
- Chevrolet Camaro (winner) - This year will go down as the first year in 25 years that the Camaro has outsold the Ford Mustang. More impressive is that the Camaro did it with just a one model, the coupe, while Ford had the Mustang coupe, convertible and high-performance GT500. With a new convertible and Z/28 on the way, Mustang’s got a serious fight on its hands.
- Ford Flex (loser) - It just ain’t working. It’s never come anywhere close to the 100,000 units per year Ford so brashly predicted, trending instead around 35,000 per year. This year, it’s down six percent. Maybe it’s just a lull, but it doesn’t bode well for the Flex.
- Mini Clubman (loser) - Is Mini sure people want big Minis? Clubman sales are down 24 percent in 2010, but that’s apparently not stopping the company from launching the Countryman and the new Paceman concept. Product diversity for diversity’s sake doesn’t seem to be working.