The Ford Mustang Mach-E was named utility vehicle of the year at the 2021 North American Car, Truck, and Utility Vehicle of the Year Awards on Monday.
The win suggests that Ford, a relative newcomer to electric vehicles, may give Tesla a run for its money in years to come.
The Hyundai Elantra won car of the year and the Ford F-150 was named the best truck.
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The Ford Mustang Mach-E snagged top honors at the 2021 North American Car, Truck, and Utility Vehicle of the Year (NACTOY, for short) Awards during a virtual event Monday.
The Mach-E, Ford’s first electric vehicle, claimed the title of utility vehicle of the year, indicating that Tesla’s years-long reign as the undisputed leader in EVs may be coming to a close, and that legacy carmakers like the Blue Oval may not be playing catch-up for very much longer.
The NACTOY Awards are judged by a panel of 50 automotive journalists, who narrowed down 43 eligible vehicles to three winners based on segment leadership, innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction, and value. The Hyundai Elantra won car of the year, while the jury dubbed the Ford F-150 pickup of the year.
Read more: Tesla, GM, and Ford each have their own unique strategies for EV success – here’s how they compare
The winners beat out six other finalists: the Genesis G80, Nissan Sentra, Jeep Gladiator Mojave, Ram 1500 TRX, Genesis GV80, and Land Rover Defender.
But the Mach-E hasn’t just impressed members of the media, it has also wowed Wall Street analysts, who say that Ford’s sleek electric crossover could spell bad news for Tesla investors.
A team of JPMorgan analysts took the Mach-E for a spin recently, “and walked away thoroughly impressed.” While the new car isn’t necessarily better than the Tesla Model Y – its biggest competitor – it could help boost Ford’s market value, JPMorgan said in a note to clients.
Read more: Ford’s electric-car mastermind explains how his team made the Mustang Mach-E stand out against competitors like Tesla
The analysts also said that an increase in the amount of attractive electric options on the market could hurt Tesla’s valuation in three ways: by eating into its sales, by decreasing demand from other carmakers for Tesla’s Zero Emission Vehicle credits, and by casting doubt on the “perceived paradigm shifting nature of Tesla’s vehicles and business model and, in turn, its industry unique valuation.”
Insider’s Car of the Year was a non-Tesla EV as well. The hybrid Polestar 1 and all-electric Polestar 2 jointly snagged Insider’s highest automotive honor, while Porsche’s battery-powered super sedan, the Taycan, was a runner up.
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