2015 Ford F-150 Takes Top Honors at 2014 Truck Rodeo

Oct. 15, 2014 By Jeff Ross, Photos by Raven Studios
The all-new 2015 Ford F-150 took home the Full-Size Truck of Texas award at this yearís Truck Rodeo hosted by the Texas Auto Writers Association.

Pickup trucks and SUVs are about as important to Texas consumers as Subarus are to Vermont buyers and the Toyota Prius is to California. For this reason, the annual Truck Rodeo put on by the Texas Auto Writers Association is an important event that helps set the bar for the truck market as it is among the first awards to be handed out ahead of the busy auto show season.

Although there are 20 individual categories that are voted on, the most important is the one that names the Truck of Texas. Ending the two-year reign of the Ram 1500 as the Truck of Texas, the all-new thirteenth-generation Ford F-150 drove off with the prestigious title this year beating out competition from the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and the 2015 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. This accomplishment marked the fifth time in the last eight years that the Ford F-Series has been named the Truck of Texas, and it did so in commanding style garnering more than two-thirds of all first place votes from attendees. The 2015 Ram 1500 came in a distant second place and the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado came in third.

In addition to the top award, the 2015 Ford F-150 was also recognized as the Full-Size Pickup Truck of Texas, the Luxury Pickup Truck of Texas (in Platinum trim) as well as having the Best Technology Feature thanks to its extensive use of high-strength, military-grade aluminum alloy for body construction. Ford continued its domination with the 2015 Ford Transit being named the Commercial Vehicle of Texas, while Fordís counterparts at Lincoln were celebrating the 2015 Lincoln MKC being named both the Luxury CUV of Texas and the overall CUV of Texas. Ford edged out Ram to also receive the status of Truck Line of Texas.

Taking home the SUV of Texas award again was the 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee, which has held this title since its redesign in 2011.

The sole top-level award not going to a Ford product was the SUV of Texas award, which went to the 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Grand Cherokee has held this title ever since its redesign for the 2011 model year, and the 2014 Truck Rodeo saw new models like the go-anywhere 2015 Grand Cherokee Overland and the luxurious 2015 Grand Cherokee Summit. Unlike Fordís Truck of Texas blowout, the race for SUV of Texas was much closer with the 2015 Grand Cherokee squeaking out a win over the 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe Z71 and the refreshed 2015 Ford Expedition.

Chrysler Group had plenty of other awards to boast as well, including the 2015 Jeep Wrangler being named the Off-Road SUV of Texas, while the 2015 Ram Power Wagon took home the title of Off-road Pickup Truck of Texas. Chrysler UConnect Access was named the Best Connectivity feature, and the Ram 1500ís 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V-6 was recognized as the Best Powertrain. Finally, the 2015 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk was named Compact SUV of Texas and the 2015 Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn Heavy Duty Pickup Truck of Texas.

The all-new 2015 Chevrolet Colorado earned the designation of top Mid-Size Pickup Truck.

Other awards handed out at the 2014 Truck Rodeo include the 2015 Range Rover Evoque 5-Door named as the Compact Luxury SUV, the 2015 Chevy Colorado Crew Cab was the top Mid-Size Pickup Truck, the 2015 Honda CR-V Touring took home the Compact CUV title, the 2015 Subaru Outback 2.5i was named the Mid-size CUV, the 2015 GMC Yukon Denali was named Full-size Luxury SUV and the 2015 Kia Sedona was named full-size CUV (entered as a multi-purpose vehicle against the Chevrolet Traverse).

The 2015 Ram Power Wagon took home honors of Off-road Pickup Truck of Texas.

In total, 60 automotive journalists from across the country descended upon the scenic and sprawling Knibbe Ranch in Spring Branch, TX (just outside of San Antonio) to put 75 trucks, SUVs and crossovers to the test both on road and off. In addition to an off-road course that included water crossings, rock crawling, hill climb and plenty of rugged Texas Hill Country terrain, drivers were also able to take the vehicles out on street driving routes to see how each vehicle feels in everyday driving. After driving each vehicle, each journalist votes for their first, second and third favorites in each of 24 categories with each counting for three points for a first place vote, two points for a second place vote and one point for a third place vote.


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