Market Overview

FCA US Brands Receive Top Honors From the Texas Auto Writers Association


DRIPPING SPRINGS, Texas, Oct. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

  • FCA US brands take home the most awards of any manufacturer at the annual competition
  • Ram and Jeep® brands pull ahead of the competition in head-to-head matchup with improved quality, craftsmanship, powertrains, performance
  • Ram brand wins two pickup truck categories and the new 2017 Ram Power Wagon tops the scoring charts in several judging criteria
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee beats its competition for seventh consecutive year
  • Jeep Wrangler wins its category for the seventh consecutive year
  • Jeep Cherokee named Compact Sport Utility Vehicle for the fourth consecutive year
  • Jeep Renegade wins Compact Crossover Utility Vehicle award for the second year in a row
  • FCA Uconnect wins Best Connectivity

Ram and Jeep® brands won several accolades this year at the Texas Truck Rodeo hosted by the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA).

After two days of challenging on- and off-road driving, TAWA members voted for the best-performing vehicles. FCA US brands secured seven awards, the most of any manufacturer at the event, as well as receiving four of the highest scores based on quantitative data collected at the event. 

"The Ram 1500 Rebel was the most driven single vehicle in the competition with 33 runs on our challenging on- and off-road courses," said Nic Phillips, TAWA president. "Ram's debut of the 2017 2500 Power Wagon set new benchmarks in our scoring system with the highest figures in the exterior, performance and personal appeal dimensions across all vehicles in the competition. That's a most impressive feat given all the vehicles we had on hand and the fact that Ram chose the Texas Truck Rodeo for the first-ever media drives and evaluations of its most extreme off-road trucks speaks to the seriousness of our competition. The Ram 1500 Longhorn's luxurious interior looks like it was made for Texans, resonating the most with our journalists naming it the Luxury Pickup Truck of Texas.

"The same can be said of FCA's strong showing with the Jeep brand's repeated wins in our utility vehicle categories," Phillips added. "Their unique styling, Texas-tested capability and leading value proposition have made the Grand Cherokee, Cherokee and compact Renegade a repeat favorite of our voting members in their respective classes." 

A total of 82 pickups, SUVs, crossovers and commercial vehicles were entered in the competition and 72 TAWA members attended the event. Members cast their votes after two days of on- and off-road vehicle evaluations. Consideration is given to everything from exterior/interior styling and off-road capability to the entrant's overall utility, value and performance. 

"There is little doubt in the results from this year's Texas Truck Rodeo that FCA has a highly competitive truck and SUV lineup for the widely varied missions of Texans," said Phillips.

FCA brands receiving accolades at the 2016 Texas Truck Rodeo were:

Ram Brand
Luxury Pickup Truck: 2017 Ram 1500 Longhorn
Off-Road Pickup Truck: 2017 Ram Power Wagon
Highest Number of Drives: 2017 Ram 1500 Rebel
Highest Exterior Score Overall: 2017 Ram Power Wagon
Highest Performance Score Overall: 2017 Ram Power Wagon
Highest Personal Appeal Score Overall: 2017 Ram Power Wagon  

Jeep Brand
Compact CUV: 2016 Jeep Renegade
Compact SUV: 2017 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk 
Midsize SUV: 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk
Off-Road SUV: 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited   

Best Connectivity: FCA Uconnect   

About TAWA
The Texas Auto Writers Association, Inc. was founded in 1985 by automotive journalists who wanted to provide an avenue of professional growth, development and networking. These professionals sought to create an automotive event that was unique to Texas, and the result was the TAWA Truck Rodeo. Since 1992, Truck Rodeos have been held in San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Granbury and Spring Branch, and now Dripping Springs. 

In 2003, TAWA created an event for sedans, sports cars, and other vehicles not eligible for the Truck Rodeo. The Texas Auto Roundup, as the event is called today, has been held annually at the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. For more information, visit  

FCA US LLC is a North American automaker with a new name and a long history. Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, FCA US is a member of the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) family of companies. FCA US designs, engineers, manufactures and sells vehicles under the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and FIAT brands, as well as the SRT performance vehicle designation. The company also distributes the Alfa Romeo 4C model and Mopar products. FCA US is building upon the historic foundations of Chrysler, the innovative American automaker first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925; and Fiat, founded in Italy in 1899 by pioneering entrepreneurs, including Giovanni Agnelli.

FCA, the seventh-largest automaker in the world based on total annual vehicle sales, is an international automotive group. FCA is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "FCAU" and on the Mercato Telematico Azionario under the symbol "FCA."

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