We’ve been quite vocal in our opinion of “Car of the Year” awards such as those sold handed out every year by Motor Trend. Even worse are those awards bestowed by non-automotive rags where a COTY announcement ranks right up there with their pronouncements of the years trendiest sunglasses or the best place for killer mojitos. Yet, for whatever reason, Esquire has decided the world needs yet another of these useless (to everyone but their advertising department) awards.
At least “the magazine for men” is up front about their selection criteria and admits “picking a car of the year is not a scientific business.” They have their “own set of priorities.” They explain a Car of the Year “should be able to stir the ol’ loins . . . it should also be attainable for most men . . . be sharp enough to impress a date and restrained enough to park next to your boss . . . [be] thrilling but not profligate, handsome but not faddish . . . [and] fulfill the mundane, practical needs of year-round transportation but also pack enough beans under the hood to give you a queasy feeling when you realize the guy in the Porsche is instigating a race.”
So their selection criteria are totally arbitrary yet are things to which a pistonhead can relate. Fair ’nuff. However, the one criterion that you’d think essential is missing: that you can actually buy one. Their “first ever” COTY? The 2010 Ford Taurus SHO. That’s right. They gave an award for the best car you can buy to a car that isn’t even for sale yet. The 2010 Taurus won’t be seen in the showrooms (SHOrooms?) until some time next month. But hey! Once it’s there, it’ll have a ready-made advertising campaign; a state of affairs that I suspect also applies to Esquire. Whatta deal!
[TTAC welcomes former Managing Editor Frank Williams back to the autoblogosphere.]