The Motor Trend Car of the Year (COTY) is an annual award given by Motor Trend magazine to recognize the best new or significantly refreshed car in a given model year.
Motor Trend's Car of the Year is "one of the most prestigious honors bestowed in the auto industry."
The trophy for the winner, a depiction of calipers, is often used in the winning automaker's marketing and advertising. Most cars that win the award report a spike in sales.
Motor Trend also only considers cars with base MSRPs less than $100,000 in order to avoid expensive luxury and super cars dominating the competition.
Vehicles are subjected a battery of tests: standard car tests such as skid-pad ratings, acceleration and quarter-mile times, and evaluations of the interiors are combined with a track run conducted by Sports Car Club of America-licensed testers and taking the cars out on normal roads to test their drivability under normal conditions, and fuel economy. Trucks and SUVs add towing capacity and speed, plus an off-road course, to the normal regimen.