Going by press and internet buzz, the 2014 Jeep Cherokee is likely to come out on top this year at The North American Car and Truck of the Year Awards (NACTOY). This Tuesday, the NACTOY jury comprised of 48 top automotive journalists announced that the Acura MDX, Chevrolet Silverado and the Jeep Cherokee are the three truck finalists for this year. These trucks set themselves apart from strong competitors such as the BMW X5, the Land Rover Range Rover Sport and the Toyota Tundra.
In order for a domestic or imported car or truck to be eligible for the NACTOY award, there has to have been significant change in the model from its previous years. According to NACTOY, these cars and trucks are nominated based on “innovation, comfort, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.” If it wasn’t for the signature (but updated) grill remaining on the Cherokee, the modernized sleekness of the 2014 edition may make it unfamiliar for some without a second glance. As earlier reported by us, the new Cherokee also possesses the first nine-speed automatic transmission, over 40 inches of legroom and advanced safety equipment usually reserved for luxury cars.
The Dodge Ram 1500 was the winner of last year’s NACTOY award, and we’ll find out if the favorite truck of many will take home this year’s award on January 13th at the Detroit Auto Show.
Click here for more 2014 Jeep Cherokee specs.