(Corrects car name to Fusion in third paragraph, analyst's
name, affiliation in paragraph eight)
By James B. Kelleher
DETROIT Jan 11 Ford Motor Co (F.N), swept the
2010 North American Car and Truck Awards at the Detroit auto
show on Monday, marking only the third time in the 17-year
history of the award that a single automaker has claimed both
A panel of about 50 U.S. and Canadian automotive
journalists named the Ford Fusion Hybrid the car of the year
and the Ford Transit Connect the truck of the year.
The Fusion beat out the Buick LaCrosse and the Volkswagen
Golf/GTI for the car title, while the Transit Connect beat out
the Chevrolet Equinox and Subaru Outback for the truck title.
The automakers typically use the awards, presented at the
start of the North American International Auto Show, to market
"A couple of years ago -- a number of years ago -- we said
we wanted to get back into the car business and we wanted to do
it with vehicles that had great quality, great fuel efficiency,
technology and safety," said Mark Fields, president of the
Americas for Ford.
Ford is the only one of the three Detroit automakers that
did not file for bankruptcy last year or receive any of the
$120 billion the U.S. government spent to prop up the industry.
And unlike General Motors [GM.UL] and Chrysler [CCMLPD.UL],
its top leadership has been steady since 2006, when Ford
brought in an outsider -- former Boeing executive Alan Mulally
-- to take the reins.
"I think there's been a big advantage in the steady
management over the last three years," said John Casesa,
managing partner at Casesa Shapiro Group.
"It's kept the strategy very consistent ... I think they
have done a great job of taking advantage of the disarray of
their domestic opponents."
Ford stock has gained 55 percent since November and more
than quadrupled over the past year as the No. 2 U.S. automaker
steered clear of the government bailouts that wiped out equity
in its domestic rivals and prompted a massive restructuring of
(Reporting by James B. Kelleher, editing by Dave Zimmerman)
(email@example.com; 312 636-8835)
(See blogs.reuters.com/shop-talk/ for Detroit auto
show coverage on Shop Talk -- Reuters' retail blog.)