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Chrysler Pacifica, Chevy Bolt and Honda Ridgeline named vehicles of year at Detroit auto show

The Chevrolet Bolt EV was named car of the year and the Windsor, Ont.-made Chrysler Pacifica was given utility vehicle of the year honours at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

2017 Honda Ridgeline wins truck of the year

FCA's Tim Kuniskis accepts the utility vehicle of the year award after the Chrysler Pacifica won the honour at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Monday morning. (Dan Taekema/CBC)

The Windsor, Ont.-made 2017 Chrysler Pacifica was named utility vehicle of the year at the Detroit auto show on Monday. 

The Chevrolet Bolt EV picked up the car of the year award, while the Honda Ridgeline was named truck of the year.

The awards were announced at Detroit's Cobo Center, at the North American International Auto Show's press preview.

Tim Kuniskis of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles accepted the award for the Pacifica.

"It's been in market for six months now and the response, inside and outside, with customers and journalists has been fantastic," said Kuniskis.

FCA officially launched the Pacifica in May last year, aimed at eventually replacing the Chrysler Town and Country and the Dodge Grand Caravan.

Chrysler has sold more than 14 million minivans since their launch in 1983, with 10 million of those built in Windsor.

GM wins car of year with Chevy Bolt

The Bolt beat out the Genesis G90 and Volvo S90 for the car of the year title. The electric car from Chevy went on sale late last year. It gets more than 320 kilometres per battery charge and sells for about $30,000 US, including a federal tax credit in the U.S.

Speaking to reporters, Mary Barra said the company is proud that its Michigan-made electric vehicle was named car of the year. "We have over 40 manufacturing facilities in this country," she said, "the last two years alone we invested over $11 billion US, creating thousands of new jobs and maintaining jobs as well as bringing and technical talent."

Electric vehicles have failed to catch on with most American consumers amid low gasoline prices, but General Motors hopes the range and price help shift opinions.

Mark Reuss, GM's head of global product development, described the Bolt as a "moon shot."

"We didn't have all the answers when we started the program — in terms of how far we were going to get range-wise, how light are we going to get the car and ... sell price," he said. "We hit on all cylinders on this, so to speak, even though there's not any in the car."

The Ridgeline scored the truck award over Ford F-Series Super Duty and the Nissan Titan. Pacifica got the nod for the utility award over the Jaguar F-Pace and Mazda CX-9.

About 60 automotive journalists serve as judges for North American car, truck and utility vehicle of the year awards. Eligible vehicles must be new or substantially changed.

With files from The Associated Press

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