The Tesla Model S has made history as the first vehicle without an internal combustion engine to be awarded the 2013 Car of the Year by Motor Trend magazine. The coveted award has been presented for 64 years and previously had awarded the honor to other progressive vehicles such as the Chevy Volt in 2011, and the Toyota Prius in 2004. Both of those vehicles still housed gasoline engines. Giving the award to a fully electric vehicle is a good sign that attitudes toward electric cars are changing.
Although many see the value in reducing the use of gasoline, the more common electric cars on the market just lack the appeal of the Model S. It's not only attractive looking, but it handles well enough to compete with gas powered engines.
According to The Christian Science Monitor, the other 11 finalists for the prize included the Porsche Boxster, BMW 3-series, Lexus GS, and Subaru BRZ. Angus MacKenzie, editor-at-large of Motor Trend magazine wrote, "The mere fact the Tesla Model S exists at all is a testament to innovation and entrepreneurship, the very qualities that once made the American automobile industry the largest, richest, and most powerful in the world. America can still make things. Great things." Moving toward American-made electric vehicles and reducing dependence on foreign oil can only mean positive progress for the American economy.
MacKenzie also described the car of the year by saying, "It drives like a sports car, eager and agile and instantly responsive, but it's also as smoothly effortless as a Rolls-Royce, can carry almost as much stuff as a Chevy Equinox, and is more efficient than a Toyota Prius." That is some great praise for a vehicle that many didn't believe would be viable, and it shows the Model S can compete with traditional vehicles in today's marketÂ—always a good sign.