Unless you have been living on an island in the middle of the Pacific cutoff from all automotive information, you kno2 that there is a yearly award for Motor Trend's Car or Truck of the Year.
North American Car/Truck Awards
If you follow the automotive consumer press, you probably are familiar with the North American Car or Truck of the Year (NACTOY) awards. The NACTOY awards were tied to the Detroit Auto Show. However, when the show was canceled last year due to the coronavirus, the NACTOY awards became independent.
Indeed, there are several middling-sized automotive press organizations whose members put together their lists of "best cars" and "best trucks" or "best vehicle in the snow" quite regularly. They are regular enough to consider them in the same light as the older more-established automotive awards. My colleague Jimmy Dinsmore relates how Ford is giving potential buyers added incentive to retain their Bronco positions. Ford has been faced with with silent assembly lines earlier because of supplier issues.
With that said, it's time to acknowledge a newish award from The Car Connection (TCC). For 2021, Ford has two contenders among the eight vehicles competing for TCC's "The Best 2021 Cars" to buy.
Ford Bronco Sport
" The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport carves out a new all-terrain niche for one of the most beloved off-road names in auto history."
This is quite a sweeping statement from The Car Connection. However, the reviews we have heard and read about Bronco Sport more than justify the choice. Ford used its T6 or Escape platform as the basis for the Bronco Sport.
It is a small crossover that should easily compete against the Jeep Cherokee, Compass, or the Subaru Crosstrek. On the TCC's 10-scale, it earns a seven.
TCC lauds the Bronco Sport for "delivering off-road capability in a segment that often lacks it." That's why when you look at images of the Bronco Sport on Torque News in stories by our top reporters like Jimmy Dinsmore or yours truly (Marc Stern), you will often see images of the Bronco Sport kicking up lots of dirt and sand off-road. Or, you might see it rock-crawling, as well.
Bronco Sport Has Retro Look
The Bronco Sport "resurrects square ends, a tall roof, and heavily cladded bumpers that are much more than cosmetic." Ford's design team has taken the cladding inside, combining it with "functional plastics and clever storage areas."
Two engines are available a standard 1.5-liter "turbo-3" with five drive modes. The second engine is the 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo that adds a "twin-clutch rear differential that can shift up to 100 percent torque to either rear wheel." It also adds "two more drive modes that adapt throttle and traction settings to the conditions." The bigger engine is standard on the Badlands and First edition models.
There's independent front and rear suspension on top-of-the-line models. These models also feature softer spring rates to keep the ride smooth. The Bronco S[ort features more than 100 accessories, notes TCC.
This is the second Ford model in competition for TCC's 2021 "Best Car To Buy."
The editors of TCC had this rave:
" The 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E vaults the famed pony car into the electrified age."
As Senior Correspondent Jimmy Dinsmore noted , the Mustang Mach-E is an excellent vehicle.
No longer what you might think of as a standard car, it is an electric crossover that competes with the Tesla Model Y, Chevy Bolt EV, Volvo XC40 Recharge, and Volkswagen ID.4, among others.
Mustang Mach-E A Strong Contender
It features a "balance of performance and range, smart packaging, sharp design, and load features that earn it a high TCC Rating out of 8.6 of 10."
As TCC notes, the Mustang Mach-E features a balance of performance and range, smart packaging, thoughtful design, and loaded features earn it a high TCC Rating of 8.6 out of 10. Everything about the Mustang Mach-E is new "except for the Mustang name and icon galloping across the grille, wheels, hatch, and steering wheel." Correspondent Jimmy Dinsmore discusses a comprehensive history of the Mustang and Mustang Mach-E.
The Mach-E has a unique look that features a long nose and dipping hood. It features a wide rear end. It also features sequential taillights.
Torque News noted that Ford took the unusual step of naming it a unique brand when it was introduced. The Mach-E was more than just another pretty face.
Mustang Mach-E Is Rear Drive
The uniquely Fordian Mustang is a rear-drive EV (electric vehicles) that reportedly has a range of about 300 miles per charge. The 300-mile range is a result of the bigger 88-kWh battery pack. There is a smaller battery pack – 68-kWh – that will do about 230 miles, says TCC.
The Mustang Mach-E is a fast vehicle, capable of hitting 60 in 4.8 seconds. An upcoming GT model, says TCC, should do the 0 to 60 run in 3.5 seconds.
On the inside, there is more than enough room for five to ride in comfort. The cargo area can take on about 60 cubic feet of cargo. The cargo floor is tiered to "optimize the [use of] space," TCC says.
The Mustang Mach-E features Ford's latest safety and convenience features. They include:
Mustang Mach-E Has Great Features
- Automatic Emergency Braking
- Adaptive cruise control that “restarts from a stop”
- An available hands-free driving system that can be optionally installed
- A 15.5-inch touchscreen that presents, among other things, climate controls, a volume dial. It also serves as the gauge cluster
- Bluetooth device pairing which includes smartphone charging capability
Marc Stern has been an auto writer since 1971. It was a position that filled two boyhood dreams: One that I would write, and two that I write about cars. When I took over as my newspaper's auto editor, I began a 32-year career as an automotive columnist. There isn't much on four wheels that I haven't driven or reviewed. My work has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, etc. Today, I am the Ford F150 reporter for Torque News. I write how-to and help columns for online sites such as Fixya.com and others. You can follow me on Twitter or Most of Marc's stories are part of Torque News Ford coverage. Check back again and search for Torque News Ford F-150 news for more F-150 truck news coverage.