Many traditional automotive awards single out one specific vehicle. However, at Connected World we like to examine a host of different vehicles, based on key points, with the idea that the connected car shouldn't be limited to just the affluent buyer. Today, car buyers are looking for all the best in safety, convenience, and infotainment and are doing so at all price ranges. The Connected Car of the Year vehicles were evaluated at all price levels, ranging from the small and midsize, to the luxury and ultra-luxury sedan-style categories. EV (electric vehicle) has now gained in popularity and earned top honors as well as a connected truck. SUVs were not evaluated for this year's awards, ironically comparable features and technologies are available in an SUV form under the same family of vehicles for each of this year's winners.

The winners for the 2014 Connected Car of the Year are as follows:

Small
Dodge Dart
The 2014 Dodge Dart comes packed with information and entertainment technology, all delivered in a manner that promotes a distraction-free environment. The Chrysler Uconnect infotainment system is the centerpiece to the in-vehicle experience. An 8.4-in. touchscreen radio is the showcase to the Uconnect Voice Command system that allows you to operate a Bluetooth-compatible phone without every taking your eyes off the steering wheel.

 

Midsize
Infiniti Q50
The midsize category gets a technology overhaul thanks in part to the powerful combination of safety, convenience, and infotainment options that Infiniti packs into its Q50 sedan. The Infiniti InTouch provides a fully customizable digital environment. The system works with the vehicle's Intelligent Keys to recognize the vehicle settings for up to four different drivers. The vehicle automatically engages pre-set preferences for driving position, climate controls, infotainment, navigation, and a wealth of other driver settings.

 

Luxury
BMW 5 Series
BMW converges speech, touch, and gesture in delivering you that in-vehicle experience within its BMW 5 Series luxury sedan. ConnectedDrive Services is the German-based automaker's answer to providing you with a wide range of information, entertainment, and service features in its class. Designed as a suite of services and apps, ConnectedDrive puts you in control in the connected world, blending a myriad of intelligent technologies, including Siri Eyes Free and Samsung S Voice.

 

Ultra Luxury
Mercedes-Benz S-Class
More than 20 million lines of code go into developing the new Mercedes S Class. Mercedes Benz's vision for Intelligent Drive is capable of analyzing complex situations on the road and developing an understanding for the proper actions to take. Through the use of sensors and radars, the car looks ahead and all around it in order to spot hazards on the road. A series of standard and optional systems alert you of all situations, apply brakes when necessary, and responds autonomously in order to avoid collisions.

 

Green
Tesla Motors Model S
The Tesla Model S has raised expectations that an electric vehicle can indeed be slick, stylish, and a bit sexy. Beyond the basic navigation and infotainment features that can be controlled via this 17-in. touchscreen, drivers can automatically adjust active air suspension of the vehicle, adjust regenerative braking settings, or open the all-glass panoramic roof, all with the swipe of a finder on the touchscreen.

 

Truck
Ford Motor Co. F-150
The Ford F-150 pickup strikes the right balance of technology and craftsmanship in design. Ford SYNC delivers its signature hands-free, distraction-free driving experience. This comes in handy for allowing you to make calls, compose text messages, and control entertainment features, such as the radio, all without taking your hands off the wheel. The optional SYNC with MyFord Touch features vehicle health report checkups, which will determine the working conditions of the vehicle's operating systems.

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