AJAC’s Best Technical Innovation award for 2023 goes to Range Rover for its Adaptive Off-Road Cruise Control.
The Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) has awarded a trio of technologies with its Automotive Innovation Awards for 2023.
Nominations for the innovation awards were made by AJAC members and finalists were selected in each of the three categories.
Each automaker selected as a finalist presented its technology virtually to a panel of 11 judges, comprised of some of the most knowledgeable and respected journalists across Canada who regularly cover automotive technology.
“AJAC’s Innovation Awards represent some of the most important advancements in automotive technology,” said Evan Williams, AJAC Vice-President. “Our jurors examine and evaluate the nominated technologies through a comprehensive process and submit their selections by secret ballot to ensure complete objectivity. Canadians can be assured that the vehicles featuring the winning technologies integrate some of the most significant innovations in today’s automotive market.”
The winners for the 2023 Automotive Innovation Awards are:
Best Safety Innovation – Subaru EyeSight Wide-Angle Mono Camera
Subaru captures the award for Best Safety Innovation for is latest EyeSight updates. With the new camera-based system, Subaru is increasing safety for those outside the vehicle as well as the occupants within.
The wide-angle mono camera enhances the capabilities of Subaru’s existing EyeSight v4 driver-assistance technologies. In particular, the new camera extends the operating area of the Pre-Collision Braking system by widening the field of view. When entering intersections at low speed, the camera quickly spots bicycles crossing ahead and helps the car to avoid pedestrians when turning left or right.
Accidents occur frequently at intersections and the new mono camera is an innovative solution to help reduce them, worthy of being voted AJAC’s Best Safety Innovation for 2023.
Best Green Innovation – Toyota 5th-Generation Hybrid Powertrain
With the brand’s latest hybrid powertrain, as found in the 2023 Toyota Prius, Toyota has been awarded Best Green Innovation for the second year in a row.
Toyota has been at the forefront of hybrid systems since the introduction of the first Prius in 1997. The 2023 model includes a larger, 2-litre engine, a new lithium-ion battery, a new front power control unit, weight reductions and other changes to boost power and fuel efficiency and make the vehicle more enjoyable to drive.
Even as full-EVs rise in popularity, hybrids remain an important, practical and affordable means of reducing vehicle emissions. That’s witnessed by the high numbers of Canadian consumers who opt for mainstream hybrid models like those produced by Toyota, whose fifth-generation hybrid powertrain has been voted AJAC’s Best Green Innovation for 2023.
Best Technical Innovation – Range Rover: Range Rover Sport Adaptive Off-Road Cruise Control
AJAC’s Best Technical Innovation award for 2023 goes to Range Rover for its Adaptive Off-Road Cruise Control, which is standard on the 2023 Range Rover Sport. This new technology helps drivers to navigate tricky terrain by maintaining steady progress according to the ground conditions. When one of four comfort settings is selected using a steering-wheel switch, the system will intelligently adjust the vehicle speed, allowing the driver to focus on steering.
Sensors monitor every aspect of the vehicle and its movement to understand the terrain, whether it’s on a gradient, ice, uneven rocks or in deep snow. The system then modulates the speed accordingly, for example by automatically reducing speed on side slopes.
AJAC jurors recognized this new technology for its ability to assist inexperienced drivers in making safe progress off-road and in demanding winter conditions.