Auto journalist members of the Texas Auto Writers Association traveled to Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth to evaluate and drive some of the best new vehicles available for 2014. There are a range of categories and criteria, but the goal is the same.
To find the Car of Texas.
Car of Texas is, simply put, the car that Texans feel best about recommending to other Texans. And, as everyone knows, Texans don't appreciate being told what car to buy by people in New York or California.
Pictured: Mercedes-Benz CLA 250
Pictured: 2014 Infiniti Q50S 3.7
Category: Performance Sedan (runner up)
Infiniti's new Q50 uses groundbreaking technology (electric steering) and sports car DNA to pick up where the successful Infiniti G37 sedan left off.
Pictured: 2014 Lexus IS 350 F-Sport
Category: Performance Sedan (winner)
The IS F-Sport won its category, thanks to a nimbler chassis and cutting-edge exterior.
Alfa Romeo proudly showed off its stunning 4C mid-engined sports car, which goes on sale in America later this year.
Pictured: 2014 Ford Fiesta SE
Category: Sub-Compact Car (winner) and Best New Feature (winner)
The reworked Ford Fiesta took home prizes in the sub-compact category and for its novel new 1.0 liter, 3-cylinder EcoBoost turbocharged engine, which provides excellent efficiency and performance.
Pictured: 2014 Chrysler Town & Country 30th Anniversary Edition
Category: Minivan (winner)
The Town & Country triumphed in a close vote over the runner-up Toyota Sienna.
Pictured: 2014 Jaguar F-Type S
Category: Performance Coupe (winner) and Car of Texas (runner-up)
Jaguar brought the even more powerful version of the F-Type roadster we drove last year and set it loose on a race track where it provided thrills, and, of course, a sensational soundtrack. A 488 horsepower engine gives it the bite to match its bark.
Pictured: 2014 Ford Fiesta ST
Category: Performance Compact (winner) and Best Value (winner)
Like the Fiesta SE, the hot-hatch ST version took home two awards, thanks to surprising, explosive performance and fun-to-drive chassis tuning. It's great to see such tight competition in the Performance Compact class.
Pictured: 2014 Chrysler 200
Category: Mid-size Car (winner)
Chrysler's all-new 200 sedan uses the familiar and well-liked Pentastar V6 and drops it into an aerodynamic and responsive package that aims to dethrone the Ford Fusion.
On this day, at least, it achieved that.
Pictured: 2015 Hyundai Genesis 5.0L
Category: Car of Texas (winner), Mid-Size Luxury Car (winner), Best New Interior (winner) and Family Car of Texas (runner-up)
The freshly launched Genesis earned wins in just about everything it was eligible for — but most important, it took home Car of Texas.
Pictured: 2014 Chrysler 300
Category: Full-Size Luxury Car (winner)
Though not all new like its younger sibling (Chrysler 200), the 300 still offers a unique combination of luxury, exterior and interior details, and performance that no one has been able to equal in this category.
Pictured: 2015 Kia K900 VIP
Category: Full-Size Luxury Car (runner-up)
The K900 is a bold effort from Kia, which marks the automaker's first V8 engine and rear-drive chassis sold in the United States market. Naturally, everyone was extremely curious to try it.
Pictured: 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Shaker
Category: Performance Coupe
The current Challenger will make way for a refreshed 2015 Challenger next year, but a few laps in the HEMI-powered brute will always put a smile on your face.
Pictured: 2014 Fiat 500 1957 Edition
Category: Sub-Compact Car (runner-up)
The cheeky 1957 Edition 500 adds even more character to a car that's already got it in spades. Its body-colored wheel caps were among the most talked-about features on any car in attendance.
Pictured: 2014 Scion FR-S
Category: Performance Compact (runner-up)
The FR-S is always a favorite among enthusiasts, and its influence in the marketplace will start to become more apparent in the next few model years.
Pictured: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible
Category: Performance Coupe (runner-up)
A new generation of Corvette is always exciting, and the C7 is the best Vette yet.
Pictured: Ford Fusion Energi Titanium
Category: Green Vehicle (winner)
The Fusion Energi took top honors in the increasingly competitive Green Vehicle segment. Offering the range of gas, the efficiency of electric and the proven package of the Ford Fusion, the Fusion Energi is a seamless and practical electric-powered option for most people.