DETROITMotor Trend announced today that the 2014 Cadillac CTS sedan is its Car of the Year for 2014.

"The all-new 2014 Cadillac CTS prevailed over one of the most competitive fields in recent memory because it best met our award's key criteria. Our judges were particularly impressed by the CTS's responsive powertrains and masterful balance of smooth ride and sporty handling," said Motor Trend editor-in-chief Ed Loh.

Motor Trend's Car of the Year program is open to any all-new or substantially upgraded 2014 automobile. Rather than being compared against one another, contending vehicles are first put through Motor Trend's full battery of performance tests to measure acceleration, braking, and limit handling.

All contenders are then evaluated on three separate courses at a professional automotive test center before finalists are selected. Out of 22 contending 2014 models, Motor Trend's judges picked seven Car of the Year finalists, in addition to the Cadillac CTS:

BMW 4 Series
Chevrolet Corvette
Jaguar F-Type
Kia Forte
Mazda3
Mazda6
Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Each finalist is then driven on a real-world road loop that provides a range of surfaces and traffic conditions to evaluate ride and handling, engine and transmission smoothness and responsiveness, wind and road noise, and ergonomics. In the final phase of Car of the Year, Motor Trend judges debate and evaluate each vehicle against the awards six key criteria:

Design Advancement - well-executed exterior and interior styling; innovative vehicle packaging; good selection and use of materials.

Engineering Excellence - total vehicle concept and execution; clever solutions to packaging, manufacturing and dynamics issues; cost-effective tech that benefits the consumer.

Efficiency - low fuel consumption and carbon footprint, relative to the vehicle's competitive set.

Safety - a vehicle's ability to help the driver avoid a crash, as well as the secondary safety measures that protect its occupants from harm during a crash.

Value - competitive price and equipment levels, measured against those of vehicles in the same market segment.

Performance of Intended Function -- how well the vehicle does the job its planners, designers, and engineers intended it to do.

After 10 full days of testing, driving and deliberating, Motor Trend selected the CTS as its Car of the Year for the second time in six years. The sedan ascends into the heart of the midsize luxury market with expanded performance, elevated luxury and sophisticated technology.

"The all-new 2014 Cadillac CTS sedan delivers crafted design, thrilling performance and sophisticated technology," said Bob Ferguson, General Motors' senior vice president of Global Cadillac. "With Cadillac growing globally, driven by rising product credibility, the new CTS elevates the brand to a new level."

The 2014 Cadillac CTS is offered with three powertrains. A 272-hp 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder is standard and EPA-rated for 20/30 mpg city/highway. A 321-hp naturally aspirated V-6 is available. Rear-wheel drive is standard; all-wheel drive is optional. Exclusive to the rear-wheel-drive CTS Vsport is the all-new 420-hp 3.6-liter Cadillac Twin-Turbo V-6 engine.

The 2014 CTS is also the first Cadillac vehicle to receive the brand's eight-speed automatic. Pricing starts at $46,025, including a $925 destination charge.

Since the first Motor Trend Car of the Year was awarded to the Cadillac brand in 1949, Cadillac has won the title three additional times -- for the full brand again in 1952, with the 1992 Seville Touring Sedan, and with the second-generation CTS sedan in 2008.

Source: Source Interlink Media