Ford Edge Named NEMPA’s 2007 Winter Vehicle

BOSTON, Mass. — The New England Motor Press Association has decided the best way to take the edge off a New England winter is with the brand-new midsize Ford Edge, which it has selected as the Official Winter Vehicle of New England for 2007.

NEMPA’s auto writer judges said the Edge crossover has “Great versatility … is easy to drive and easy to park … fits every demographic from soccer mom to traveling salesman and everyone in between … (as it) edges out the competition … (and) has the fit and finish of a much more expensive vehicle.”

Coping with snow and sleet and ice from Maine to Connecticut requires some versatile vehicles and there was a good crop to choose from this year, from brand-new names to refreshed familiar badges. But deciding the winners took more than trekking through the snow, the judges had to look at value, performance, comfort and, yes, looks, because if you have to stare it in the face, err, grille, through a snow shower, it helps if it smiles back at you.

Other winners for 2007 and the judges’ comments were the “look at me” Toyota FJ Cruiser, which took away the Cool Winter Vehicle award; and Suzuki SX4 for the Yankee Value award, “All wheel drive & spunky performance for $16,000.”

The Best in Class – Crossover Vehicle award

went to the Mazda CX-7, “A crossover that thinks it’s a
sports car … sensible size, sedan manners.”

The Best in Class – Premium All Weather Sedan
award to the Audi A8, “Ultra luxury, great performance
… stealthy, worth every penny.”

The Best in Class – All Weather Sedan award
($30,000-$50,000) to Infiniti G35x, “Great engine and
transmission combo … four-door Z-car … slick car for
slick roads.”

The Best in Class – All Weather Sedan
(under $30,000) to the Subaru Impreza, “Proves itself over
and over …great value and reputation.”

The Best in Class – All Weather Wagon award
to the Volvo V-50, “Volvo’s reputation for safety & AWD at a
great price … great compact SUV alternative.”

The Best in Class – All Weather Coupe award

to the BMW 328xi, “Very refined, could be the best BMW
ever … a fast ride for all seasons.”

The Best in Class- All Weather Sports Car award
to the Porsche 911 Carrera 4S, “Fast and furious … 365
horses plus, all wheel drive equals German hot rod –
yeah baby … a blast to drive.”

The Best in Class – Pick-up Truck award
to the GMC Sierra, “All new and all good … smooth engine and
transmission … interior makes you forget it’s a
truck.”

The Best in Class – Sport Utility Vehicle award

(under $25,000) to the Kia Sportage, “Once should be
considered for price only, now a great combination of
price and quality … Toyota and Honda watch out, this
Sportage is a winner

The Best in Class – Sport Utility Vehicle award
($25,000-$35,000) to the Chrysler Aspen, “Class act …
true mid-size SUV, third seat that adults can use,
wouldn’t know it started life as a Durango. Yeah, it’s
got a Hemi.”

The Best in Class – Sport Utility Vehicle award
(over $35,000) to the Acura MDX, “The SUV pond is
plenty crowded but the MDX still stands out … others
can do better off road but for all around comfort ride
and handling the MDX is a leader … you can spend more
and get less, but why?”

NEMPA began the Official Winter Vehicle of New England in 1998. The then all-new Mercedes-Benz ML 320 won the first Official Winter Vehicle award in 1998 and its sister sport utility vehicle, the ML 430, won in 1999. The 2006 winner was the all-new Audi A3/S-line quattro.

Among the Official Winter Vehicle award winners from past years were the Audi Allroad station wagon in 2001, the Ford Explorer sport utility vehicle in 2002, the Ford F-150 pickup in 2004 and the Ford Freestyle in 2005.

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