Skip to main content

Car And Driver Names Mustang Mach-E Its Electric Vehicle Of The Year

2021 Mustang Mach-E earns Car and Driver’s first Electric Vehicle of the Year Award beating out three Teslas. Car and Driver editors say Mustang Mach-E makes being behind the wheel of an electric vehicle as rewarding as driving its gasoline counterpart.

It’s no secret the electric vehicle segment is emerging as one of the most competitive in the automotive industry. One of the most-respected publications in the industry created an inaugural award to showcase the best electric vehicle available and the 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E took home the coveted title.

The 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E earned Car and Driver’s inaugural Electric Vehicle of the Year Award beating out heavy competition which included three different Teslas.

The publication put 11 top-rated electric vehicles through rigorous testing over a three-week period, including a 1,000-mile road trip to evaluate each in real-world conditions. Mustang Mach-E took the No. 1 spot.

“We felt that if a carmaker was looking to convert people from EV skeptics to EV evangelists, there’s not a better vehicle out there than the Mustang Mach-E,” said Sharon Carty, Car and Driver editor-in-chief. “It’s a familiar shape and size of crossover. It’s in the sweet spot of what Americans love. It’s beautiful. It’s a design that gets noticed. It has a range and charging speed that is very competitive.”

The newly created electric vehicle award uses the same criteria as Car and Driver’s 10Best Awards: The vehicle must deliver exceptional driving engagement, offer indisputable value and/or practicality, fulfill its mission better than any of its competitors and, lastly, be fun to drive – a great description of Mustang Mach-E.

“Mustang Mach-E is the start of what we can do to compete in the EV revolution,” said Darren Palmer, Ford general manager, battery electric vehicles. “Its continued success in the form of happy customers, sales and awards are all signs of the momentum we are building. Accolades like the Car and Driver Electric Vehicle of the Year are particularly rewarding for the team who designed this performance battery electric vehicle to be truly fun to drive. It can only get better as we continue to learn from and grow with our customers.”

Other contenders include Audi e-tron, Kia Niro, Nissan Leaf Plus, Polestar 2, Porsche Taycan 4S PBP, Tesla Model 3 Performance, Tesla Model S Long Range Plus, Tesla Model Y Performance, Volkswagen ID.4 and Volvo XC40 Recharge. Car and Driver employed instrumented testing, subjective evaluation and side-by-side comparison in both practicality and entertainment value.

Related story: Comparing the Mustang Mach-E to the VW ID.4.

Car and Driver cover EV of the YearAwards and Accolades for the Mustang Mach-E
This recognition by Car and Driver is just one of several prestigious accolades the Mach-E has won.
None of the awards was more prestigious than the North American Utility Vehicle of the Year which it won early this year.

My Torque News colleague Marc Stern reported that the Mach-E won Popular Mechanics Excellence Award exclaiming: "whether you agree with Ford's choice to call this a Mustang or not, it's hard to deny the logic: Put the brand's most exciting marque on its most exciting vehicle."

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E

The 2021 Mustang Mach-E has claimed a number of other awards including Car and Driver’s Editor’s Choice Award earlier this year, plus the Eco-Friendly Car of the Year Award, AutoGuide’s Utility of the Year, Green Vehicle of the Year and Autoweek’s Car Buyer’s Award.

“We could have made a boring electric vehicle, a compliance vehicle that looks like a dust buster,” said Palmer. “But we decided people need an EV with soul. So we built them an all-electric Mustang SUV that is disrupting the status quo in electric vehicles. And the Mustang Mach-E GT and GT Performance Edition are still to come.”
Perhaps the best proclamation regarding the Mach-E and the use of the name that stirred so much controversy came from Eric Tingwall who wrote the story for Car and Driver about the Mustang Mach-E: “if the name is our biggest gripe, that says something major about the stuff that matters.”

In my official review of the Mach-E I did a complete 180 on my initial outraged stance against the Mach-E and the use of the name. After driving it, you know it is worthy of the name, even if it’s hard to accept. So kudos to an established publication like Car and Driver for giving even more credibility to this vehicle and helping silence the debate.

What do you think? Do you give any credibility to such publications or such awards? Leave me your comment below.

Jimmy Dinsmore has been an automotive journalist for more than a decade and been a writer since the high school. His Driver’s Side column features new car reviews and runs in several newspapers throughout the country. He is also co-author of the book “Mustang by Design” and “Ford Trucks: A Unique Look at the Technical History of America’s Most Popular Truck”. Also, Jimmy works in the social media marketing world for a Canadian automotive training aid manufacturing company. Follow Jimmy on Facebook, Twitter, at his special Ford F-150 coverage on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can read the most of Jimmy's stories by searching Torque News Ford for daily Ford vehicle report.