The First-Ever Road&Track Performance Car Of The Year

Jack Baruth
by Jack Baruth
the first ever road track performance car of the year

Thirteen cars, from the Ford Fiesta ST to the Ferrari F12berlinetta, met in Michigan two months ago for Road & Track‘s first “Performance Car Of The Year” shootout. Seven were eliminated around the “Motown Mile” concrete airport road course, one died an ignominious death in the hills of Ohio, three made it to the finals, one was crowned the 2013

In a nod to the “new media”, the magazine permitted a pair of online-writer controversialists to participate in the event. Jalopnik’s Travis Okulski spent the day at the track with us before jetting off to a Bentley event where the journalists were being allowed to hunt some of Joseph Kony’s child warriors in open-topped Continental GTCs while being force-fed foie gras in a test of meta-irony. (That’s not even remotely close to being true; I think he went home to bathe his golden retriever or something.) You can read his coverage here.

Your humble E-I-C was permitted to attend the whole thing, annoy the other writers, perform a couple of double-yellow passes that will haunt the nightmares of the magazine’s editorial staff for years to come… and, oh yeah, I wrote the story that made the young girls cry. You can read it online if you like, but I’d really prefer that you buy the magazine on the 19th and read it there. Not because I need the money, although I do. It’s more for the fact that this 3,200-word barbaric yawp is meant to be held in your hands and read old-school. There’s very little concession to short attention spans or quick paragraphs. I wanted you to be right there with us as we drove the cars. So buy the magazine, okay?

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8 of 33 comments
  • 67dodgeman 67dodgeman on Nov 14, 2013

    Don't you have to be an "at-risk youth" earning his way through college in order to properly sell magazines?

  • VoGo VoGo on Nov 14, 2013

    Well written. Might get me to re-think R&T. But one question: you all seemed to have nothing negative to say about Godzilla, but eliminated it early. Any particular reason? Is it simply out-shown by the 'Vette?

    • Jack Baruth Jack Baruth on Nov 14, 2013

      The only person to really enjoying banging the big Nissan around the Motown Mile was yours truly, and my enjoyment was sharply stifled by the fact that the shift paddles are mounted to the steering column. The Corvette is more enjoyable to drive for less money. I voted early and often against the Cayman in favor of the GT-R, but I was virtually alone in that.

  • JMII JMII on Nov 14, 2013

    When does the 3 door version of the Fiesta arrive? It will be a hard sell but this sounds like the perfect replacement for the wife's Volvo C30 a few years from now.

    • See 1 previous
    • PrincipalDan PrincipalDan on Nov 14, 2013

      @bball40dtw Sadly true. For the love of god, Bill Ford, send us either the 3-door Fiesta or 3-door Focus and make it ST ONLY. I swear you'll sell a decent # even if you make it special order only and charge the fee to ship it across the pond.

  • Cognoscenti Cognoscenti on Nov 14, 2013

    ...and the Jack Baruth C7 Corvette review is finally published! That was the longest wait ever. You're such a tease, Jack. ;)