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Jeep Is the First American Brand to Make the Top 10 for Japan’s Car of the Year

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If you think some Americans can be a little loyal to a fault, driving only cars made in America by American companies, then just wait until you go to Japan. Japanese drivers are also extreme loyalists, with Japanese streets dotted with Toyotas, Hondas, Subarus, Mazdas, Mitsubishis, Nissans, and a bunch of others you’ve probably never heard of. In fact, they are so loyal that, until this year, no American car company had cracked the top ten for the country’s Car of the Year Award. That’s right—Jeep is the first American brand to make the top 10 for Japan’s Car of the Year. Took us long enough, eh?

Of course, the Jeep Cherokee that made the top 10 did not actually win. That honor went to a Japanese car (shocker!), the Mazda2. There’s actually only been one year in which a Japanese car did not come out on top, and that was last year, when the Volkswagen Golf topped the list, though a number of European models have cracked the top 10. The award has been around since 1980 – 81.

Jeep Is the First American Brand to Make the Top 10 for Japan’s Car of the Year

The Jeep Cherokee

In the almost guaranteed event that a Japanese car wins, the nation does at least give out a special Import Car of the Year Award. This year, the award went to the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which took second overall.

Jeep is actually doing quite well in Japan. The Cherokee launched back in May of this year, and the company has seen five years of sales gains, according to Automotive News. In fact, in the first half of 2014, Jeep was beating out Ford, Chrysler, and Chevrolet handsomely in Japan, though sales volume is still low there, at just 3,188 vehicles.

News Source: Automotive News