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  • 20 Oct 2021 10:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin – Oct. 19, 2021 – The Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA) hosted the 2021 MAMA Rally last week at Road America, one of the world’s premier road racing tracks. Over the course of two days, more than 70 automotive and related industry journalists had the opportunity to put a variety of the industry’s latest vehicles through their paces including on-track, scenic street drives and a technical off-road course. 


    “What better way to celebrate MAMA’s 30th anniversary than reconnecting with so many colleagues to experience the latest and greatest from the auto industry at this legendary track following a challenging year,” said MAMA President Harvey Briggs. 

    A handful of the attending manufacturers also provided detailed overviews of their latest product offerings. Additionally, it was the first time journalists were able to experience the all-new 2022 Jeep Compass Limited, which made a special appearance at the Rally following its global reveal at the 2021 Chicago Auto Show Special Edition.

    Road America sponsored the morning breakfast to get attendees fueled up for a fun day at the track. It was mentioned during the breakfast that Road America will host major IndyCar, NASCAR, IMSA and vintage car races in the upcoming 2022 season. Following the morning of track touring laps and street drive evaluations, Nissan’s Product Planner Wade Willat shared highlights of the 2022 Nissan Frontier with MAMA members during a lunch presentation. Willat discussed the ways in which the iconic mid-sized pickup was totally redesigned for the 2022 model year including a rugged, bold exterior; adventure-oriented interior; a best-in-class 310 horsepower; and equipped with the latest driver assistance and connectivity technologies.


    “Nissan is happy to continue its partnership with the Midwest Automotive Media Association at their member-only events,” said Wendy Payne, Nissan Midwest Regional Communications Manager. “Their solid media group offers us the opportunity to showcase newly launched vehicles such as the all-new 2022 Frontier to this important audience in order to help us get the messages out on new products.” 

    The 2022 Frontier arrived at dealerships last month. Pricing begins at $27,840 for the Frontier S King Cab 4x2.

    After the track closed and street drives concluded for the day, a dozen MAMA members took part in the inaugural “4 Miles of Fitness,” sponsored by Kia, a new on-track fitness event where attendees had the chance to run, bike, or walk a shortened two, or all four miles of the Road America racetrack that they drove on just moments earlier.


    Later that evening, Lexus hosted the dinner presentation to showcase the 2022 NX 350 and 2022 IS 500. The NX 350 expands to four powertrains, including a 2.4-liter turbo and Lexus’ first-ever 2.5-liter plug-in hybrid, and is the first vehicle with Lexus Safety System+ 3.0 and digital latch with safe exit assist. As the first model in the new Lexus F SPORT Performance line, the IS 500 engine provides a boost in displacement and performance over the IS 350’s 3.5-liter V6. It expands the IS family and ushers in a new era of F SPORT Performance models that are geared towards passionate driving enthusiasts who desire higher levels of performance over the standard F SPORT Design and Handling models.

    “The MAMA Rally continues to be one of the premier events for automotive media in the country,” said Curt McAllister, Midwest Public Relations Manager for Toyota/Lexus, and a 24-year MAMA member. “Road America is the perfect backdrop to showcase our vehicles on and off the track. The dinner sponsorship provided Lexus a tremendous opportunity to do a deep dive on two of our newest products, the 2022 NX and 2022 IS 500.” 


    Jeep opened the second morning of the MAMA Rally with a breakfast presentation on the 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer and the 2021 Grand Cherokee L, both of which were available for test drives during the Rally. 

    “For 80 years, the Jeep brand has introduced an iconic lineup of vehicles. The off-road course created by the team at Jeep Jamboree at this year's Midwest Automotive Media Association Rally was the perfect place to showcase some of the newest Jeep models,” said Scott Tallon, Product Director, Jeep Brand – North America. “Providing SUVs for both on and off-road driving, like the premium Grand Wagoneer, the family-friendly Jeep Grand Cherokee L, the redesigned Jeep Compass, along with the rugged 4x4 Jeep Wrangler, enables the media to experience the same level of passion and excitement of adventure that our customers do.” 


    Throughout the day, journalists also had the opportunity to maneuver 4WD and AWD trucks and SUVs through a newly created off-road course designed by experts from Jeep Jamboree and sponsored by Jeep. Participating vehicles included the Ford Bronco, Ford Raptor, Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Jeep Wagoneer, Jeep Wrangler 392 Xtreme Recon, Jeep Wrangler 4xe, Nissan Frontier, Ram TRX, Subaru Outback Wilderness and Toyota 4Runner.


    Following an action-packed morning of more street driving, off-roading and MAMA Family Vehicle of the Year and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year analysis, Volkswagen wrapped up the Rally with a lunch presentation and overview of the 2021 ID.4 AWD. The Volkswagen ID.4 is the brand’s first all-electric SUV and first global EV. Built on Volkswagen’s MEB electric vehicle architecture, ID.4 marries the strengths of a purpose-built EV with performance, packaging and value, features that have marked the brand for decades.

    “ID.4 is a transformational car for Volkswagen, at a transformational time in our industry,” said Mark Gillies, Senior Manager of Product Communications for Volkswagen of America. “We are pleased to have such a great group of journalists experience everything the car delivers for our customers and for the brand as a whole.”

    In addition to the meal sponsorships and presentations, MAMA received support from the following sponsors: Acura, Cars.com, Chicago Automobile Trade Association, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda and Mercedes-Benz. 


    Voting for MAMA’s annual Family Vehicle of the Year (FVOTY) and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year (LFVOTY) Awards also took place. The finalists include:

    FVOTY Finalists:

    ·        2022 Honda Civic 

    ·        2022 Hyundai Tucson

    ·        2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L

    ·        2022 Kia Carnival

    ·        2021 Toyota Sienna 

    ·        2021 Volkswagen ID.4 

    LFVOTY Finalists:

    ·        2022 Acura MDX

    ·        2022 Genesis GV70 

    ·        2022 Infiniti QX60

    ·        2022 Jeep Wagoneer/Grand Wagoneer

    ·        2022 Lexus NX

    ·        2021 Mercedes-Benz S Class

    To qualify for the awards, the vehicle must have four doors and be new or significantly updated within a year of the Rally. Eligible vehicles must have been available to drive at MAMA’s July 2021 Summer Drive and this 2021 Rally. A final round of online voting will then take place to determine the overall winner in each category, both of which will be announced during the MAMA breakfast that will open the 2022 Chicago Auto Show Media Preview in February. 

    For more information on the Midwest Automotive Media Association, please visit www.mamaonline.org.

     

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    About the Midwest Automotive Media Association

    Founded in 1991 and now in its 30th year, the Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA) comprises nearly 240 automotive journalists and industry professionals from approximately 25 states and the District of Columbia. Though based in the Chicago area, MAMA welcomes members from all parts of the country. The organization’s primary purpose is to provide a forum for newsworthy people, current issues and new products in the auto industry.

  • 14 Apr 2021 10:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last month, Nissan held an eMeet to introduce the redesigned 2022 Pathfinder to the MAMA audience. Vishnu Jayamohan, Nissan’s Senior Manager of Product Strategy and Planning, opened the presentation by sharing Nissan’s mission with the new Pathfinder, which was to “fuse truck-like brawn and people-mover brains into an unbeatable product.” Jayamohan also communicated that the Pathfinder was designed for the “super-parent” who needs the “swiss-army knife” of a three-row family hauler.


    This set the stage for all of the truck’s specifications to follow. Some key highlights of the 2022 Pathfinder include:

    • All-new bold, rugged design.
    • All-new 9-speed transmission for a smooth, direct response.
    • All-new Intelligent 4WD with 7-position Drive and Terrain Mode Selector.
    • Best-in-class available 6,000-lb. maximum towing capacity which allows drivers to confidently haul boats, ATVs, and trailers.
    • Seating for up to eight, new captain's chairs option, and new EZ FLEX one-touch release (adding comfort and flexibility for the whole family).
    • All-new available 10.8-inch Head-up Display, 12.3-inch digital dashboard, ProPILOT Assist with Navi-Link, and standard Nissan Safety Shield 360 that leads to confident driving on- and off-road.
    • Wireless Apple CarPlay (offered for the first time on Pathfinder) and wireless charging.

    The Pathfinder nameplate was first introduced 35 years ago which, according to Nissan, has helped the brand to refine itself with lessons learned along the way. Today, the 2022 Pathfinder conveys strength and rugged capability paired with advanced safety and technology features to keep families safe and comfortable.

    Some key exterior highlights include:

    • Sculpted, fresh body slides.
    • New floating C-pillar.
    • Unique fender crease line over each wheel.
    • Distinctive U-shaped headlights fuse powerful fender blisters together.

     Interior features include:

    • Refined new premium materials with quilting.
    • Seven available “environments” (such as brushed bronze metallic accents).
    • Wide, open instrument panel with a user-friendly layout.
    • New 9-inch. touchscreen placed high for easy visibility.  
    • Integrated electronic shifter allows room for wide “bridge” center console.
    • Cabin quietness has been drastically improved.

    The all-new 2022 Pathfinder is offered in 2WD and 4WD and in four grades: S, SV, SL, and Platinum. Two packages, SV Premium and SL Premium, are also available. The Pathfinder is set to go on sale this summer; pricing is still TBA.

  • 14 Apr 2021 9:42 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last month, Mazda hosted an eMeet to share more about the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models. Kingsley Iduma, Mazda’s Vehicle Line Planning Manager, led the Zoom meeting to share the primary highlights of the vehicles. He touched on three key components:

    • Elevated performance: Mazda took another step forward with the introduction of its turbo-charged engine with standard all-wheel drive on both the Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models.
    • Advanced technology: New technologies were introduced in the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models to further heighten the brand’s safety reputation within the industry and meet the expectations of customers shopping for a premium vehicle.
    • Craftsmanship: The new turbo models adopt a matured “Kodo” design, taking inspiration from Japanese aesthetics and adopting a “less is more” approach. Mazda focused solely on what is essential to both vehicles’ form when crafting these new models.

    Mazda3 2.5 Turbo

    The new 2.5-liter turbo engine gives the 2021 Mazda3 heightened power and performance. Available as a sedan or hatchback, the Mazda3 turbo puts out 250 horsepower and 320 lb.-ft. of torque through a six-speed automatic. The Mazda3 2.5 Turbo now comes standard with all-wheel drive.

    Additional premium feature highlights include a color head-up display with street-sign recognition, 12-speaker Bose audio system, and 18-inch forged BBS wheels.

    Mazda CX-30 Turbo

    For the 2021 model year, the biggest difference in the CX-30 is its new turbo-charged engine. According to Mazda, this upscale powertrain brings more peak power while delivering a direct and connected driving experience. Additionally, the new turbo-charged engine delivers better traction capabilities, improving the driver’s handling and confidence. The 2021 model comes standard with all-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic.

    Additional available features include:

    • Bose 12-speaker premium audio
    • Heated steering
    • Leather seats
    • Power liftgate
    • 360-degree monitoring
    • Head-up display
    • Traffic jam assist
    • Smart city brake support reverse
    • Rear cross traffic braking

    Official pricing for both the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models has yet to be released, but it’s expected to hover around $30,000.

    Save the date! The next MAMA eMeet is on the calendar for Thursday, April 22 at 11 a.m. CDT. The topic is centered around April’s National Car Care Month and the presentation will be led by Turtle Wax. To register, click here


  • 05 Apr 2021 3:50 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Car Talk with Click and Clack might have popularized car shopping and maintenance tips as entertainment worthy of radio waves, but the proliferation of podcasts has led to topics as varying as every make, model, and trim. MAMA members spend many hours on the road, and these portable podcast companions illuminate the latest news as well as interview guests and pop quizzes.


    Some broadcasts can be caught on the AM radio, and in cars where that’s not possible (Volvo, Tesla, what’s the frequency?), there are podcasts, available wherever and whenever there is the internet.

    Here’s a brief rundown of MAMA member podcasts that we like to lend an ear. Most can be found on the internet or through podcast platforms ranging from Apple Podcasts to Spotify.

    Consumer Guide Automotive Car Stuff Podcast

    The editorial team of Consumer Guide Automotive featuring host Tom Appel and co-host Damon Bell partners with co-host Jill Ciminillo in an honor roll of past MAMA presidents in this 50-minute weekly recap available online any time but also broadcast on WCPT AM 820 radio every Sunday at 1pm CST. The format bridges fun and fact with a news recap to start the set before a guest host takes this party of three into a fantastic foursome playing through a weekly quiz, new car review, and automotive ephemera from the week.

    Drive Chicago Radio Podcast

    The long-running radio show broadcast Saturdays from 8 a.m.- 9 a.m. on WLS-AM 890 extends life as a podcast. WLS News anchor Rob Martier joins co-hosts Mark Bilek, past MAMA president and current Senior Director of Communications for the Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA), and Jim OBrill, Director of Marketing for CATA, to present a weekly microcosm of the Chicago Auto Show. In addition to covering the weekly automotive news, the hosts interview a guest, review a specific model, and talk car shopping tips and maintenance advice.

    True Road Trip Tales Podcast

    At the crossroads of cars and rock ‘n roll is the road trip, and this upstart podcast features narrative-based stories of the road trips that define our lives and the playlists that rock our souls. Host and founder Scott Leff interviews a guest with insight from resident gearhead Brian Smith and a score from producer Tyson Ellert. MAMA VP Robert Duffer was featured in Episode 8 at the end of Season 1 in “Road Trip Reawakening.”

    Cars.com Unscheduled Maintenance Podcast

    Entering a third season, “Unscheduled Maintenance” is 20-minute podcast from Cars.com and hosted by Steve Gaede that focuses on car dealer marketing and the back-end of how dealer websites work, and how they don’t.

    Pickup Truck + SUV Talk Podcast

    This infrequent podcast builds off host Tim Esterdahl and co-host and MAMA member Jill Ciminillo’s live-streamed segments from their YouTube page, covering the latest pickup truck and SUV news, of course.

    RoadWorthy Drive Podcast

    The RoadWorthy Drive podcast is where mobility and technology meet the open road. This weekly podcast doesn't always "color between the lines" as MAMA member Ken Chester and Chase Siebert discuss and debate the various aspects of mobility and related technology. From your current daily driver to EVs, autonomous vehicles, micromobility, heavy trucks, and space travel, it's subject to be covered. Related issues such as privacy and security are also discussed. 

    BONUS:

    The Fast Lane Talkin’ Cars Podcast

    While they’re not MAMA members, it’s worth noting this podcast. Fathers and sons, cars and trash talking, go together like gas and engines. Father-son duo Roman Mica and son Tommy take their charm and insights from the video reviews posted on TheFastLaneCar.com and apply it to this weekly hour-long podcast full of genuine laughs, filial bickering, and compelling automotive news of the week. The banter between these two is as fun as the cars they’re covering.

  • 05 Apr 2021 3:16 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MAMA’s first president, Jim Mateja, played an important role in Robert Duffer joining MAMA back in 2014. Duffer, who at the time was the Chicago Tribune’s Autos editor, brought back the veteran automotive journalist as a freelance writer, and with Mateja’s return, Duffer also got a mentor who was “always nudging me to be a part of MAMA.”

    Thankfully, Duffer listened to Mateja and joined MAMA. He later became a rally committee member, and today, he’s MAMA’s senior VP, working with MAMA President Harvey Briggs. 

    Duffer is a senior editor at The Car Connection. He lives in Action Heights, a suburb of Chicago more commonly known as Arlington Heights, with his two kids and a dog.

    Q: What led you to accept the senior VP role?

    A: With my professional life more solidified following the Tribune, and my personal life less chaotic with my kids getting older and my dog getting less dumb, I was overdue to give back to an organization that has given me so many unique opportunities. I also wanted the challenge of serving our member journalists as well as automotive partners in expanding our reach and creating unique programs, pandemic be damned, that benefit enthusiasts, consumers, and anyone else interested in four-wheel fun.

    Q: What 2021 MAMA plans have you most excited?

    A: I’m looking forward to seeing my friends in the automotive world. That’s one big reason I’m looking forward to the rally in October. The other is burning rubber at Road America.

    Q: What makes MAMA stand apart from other automotive organizations?

    A: The people. I don’t know if it’s the goofy acronym that I’m sure Mateja is still winking at from up high, or the alleged Midwestern sensibilities, but MAMA folk are like family, and the family reunions are on race tracks and off-road courses.

    Q: What’s been keeping you sane (or somewhat sane) during the pandemic?

    A: Dog walks, long drives, random hikes, checking off the ever-growing list of home improvement projects, and spending a lot of unusual quality time with my kids, who both became teens during the pandemic. There’s been a lot of ping-pong and basement mini-hoop, chess and board games, and we wrote a song or two about Gingerbread the dog.

    Keep up with Duffer’s Twitter musings at @DufferRobert, and read more of his work at www.robertduffer.com.

  • 05 Apr 2021 3:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MAMA continues to have success keeping its members informed in a (primarily) virtual world via its eMeet series. The one-hour presentations are intended to keep manufacturers connected with media individuals to share the latest product and company news, with most concluding with a live Q&A session among the presenters and the media attendees.


    Following each eMeet, MAMA recaps the presentations via its News section on the MAMA website. Refer to this link when digging for more details and information on recent and past MAMA eMeets. Also follow along live with the hashtag #MAMAeMeet.

    A brief outline of the latest eMeets include:

    • Hyundai hosted another eMeet to share details of its significantly refreshed 2021 Santa Fe 5-passenger SUV.
    • Kia introduced the 2021 Sorento to MAMA members and fielded live questions from the audience.
    • Maserati hosted its first eMeet to share updates on the recently unveiled MC20 and share the scoop on the luxury brand’s 2021 model year lineup.
    • Nissan hosted another presentation to introduce the newly re-invented 2022 Nissan Pathfinder to members. 
    • Mazda closed out the month with an eMeet to discuss the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models.
    • Next up on the MAMA calendar is an eMeet with Turtle Wax to talk about car care (April is National Car Care Month). This will take place virtually April 22 at 1 p.m. CDT. Be on the lookout for this invite. 

    MAMA also hosted the 2021 MAMA Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards announcement via a virtual #MAMAeMeet. The 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban received the 11th annual Family Vehicle of the Year award and the 2021 Genesis G80 was announced as the Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year. Voting for the 2022 MAMA Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards will begin at the 2021 MAMA Rally, scheduled to take place Oct. 13-14 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. 

    If you’re an automaker or affiliate member interested in setting up an eMeet, please contact MAMA SVP Robert Duffer.

  • 02 Mar 2021 9:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Recently, MAMA members had the opportunity to hear from Mike Glime, Maserati’s head of brand management for North America, and Karl DeBoer, Maserati’s MC20 brand manager, during MAMA’s latest eMeet. Both Glime and DeBoer shared information and updates on the luxury brand’s 2021 model year lineup, including an expanded Trofeo collection with V8 engines in the Levante, Ghibli, and Quattroporte. Overall, the entire 2021 model year lineup receives a significant range of styling updates as well as a new Maserati Intelligent Assistant multimedia system and the addition of active driving assist. 


    MC20

    DeBoer also shared updates on the newly unveiled MC20, which takes the brand back to its racing roots (it has been 20 years since Maserati last produced a supercar, the MC12). He said the MC20 delivers in luxury, performance and sportiness and features the brand’s new Nettuno engine. The MC20’s V6 produces 621 horsepower with 538-lb.-ft. of torque, delivering 0-62 acceleration in under 2.9 seconds with a top speed of 202 mph. The MC20 is expected to arrive in the U.S. in fall 2021.

    For the 2021 model year, Maserati unifies the styling among the Levante, Ghibli, and Quattroporte to make these vehicles instantly recognizable. Key design highlights include a new front grille and rear light clusters that provide a boomerang shape inspired by the 3200 GT. Maserati also gave the lineup modern upgrades inside while keeping signature design cues.


    2021 Maserati Model Year Lineup

    The instrument clusters inside the vehicles are redesigned for the 2021 model year and have received new dials, needles and typography – inspired by timepieces and jewelry, which the brand knows are also important to its customers. The 7-inch TFT display also features improved graphics with a black background and white retro-illuminated dials. Also new for the 2021 model year is the addition of Zegna Pelletessuta, a premium industry-exclusive woven leather interior. It is available on all three nameplates on GranSport/GranLusso trims as well as GTS and Trofeo models.

    All vehicles feature the new generation Maserati Intelligent Assistant multimedia system, powered by an Android Auto operating system. The 2021 infotainment system includes: Bluetooth for multiple devices, wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration, a reconfigurable home screen, over-the-air updates, Alexa in-vehicle voice assistant, e-call, remote diagnostics control, live navigation services, personal account, and app store access.

    The addition of active driving assist is also available in all three 2021 models. The technology is available as long as the adaptive cruise control system is activated, which aims to reduce driver fatigue and keep the vehicle centered in its lane.


    Levante

    For the 2021 model year, the Levante receives an updated front grille with a tuning fork design, available in chrome for the GranLusso trim and Piano Black for the GranSport. Notable interior updates include significant changes in both design and tech for the central display and instrument cluster. The 8.4-inch infotainment screen receives improved resolution and graphics. The 2021 Levante lineup includes the Levante, Levante S, Levante GTS, and Levante Trofeo.


    Ghibli

    In addition to the rear light clusters, the 2021 Ghibli also receives an updated grille with a tuning fork design, available on the same trims as the Levante. The Ghibli’s center screen is now larger (10.1 inches) and also receives improved resolution and graphics for the 2021 model year.

    The 2021 Ghibli lineup includes the Ghibli, Ghibli S, Ghibli S Q4, and Ghibli Trofeo.


    Quattroporte

    Maserati’s flagship, the Quattroporte, also features the upgraded grille with the same GranLusso and GranSport offerings as the Levante and Ghibli, along with the enhanced boomerang-shaped lighting cluster at the rear. The Quattroporte also receives the same enhanced central screen as the Ghibli, which has been enlarged to 10.1-inches with a curved glass top.  

    The 2021 Quattroporte lineup includes the Quattroporte, Quattroporte S Q4, and Quattroporte Trofeo.

    Trofeo Collection

    The Trofeo collection has been expanded for the 2021 model year to include the Ghibli and Quattroporte, and now, all three models feature a V8 engine that produces 580 horsepower making the Ghibli Trofeo and Quattroporte the fastest Maserati sedans ever built with a top speed of 203 mph. The Levante goes up to 187 mph. Both of the sedans feature Corsa buttons for top performance and enhanced driving dynamics.

    The next MAMA eMeet will be hosted on Wednesday, March 10 from 11 a.m. to noon CDT, led by Nissan to share updates on the newly reinvented 2022 Pathfinder. Registration for that eMeet is now open.

  • 17 Feb 2021 2:02 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CHICAGO (Feb. 17, 2021) – Today the Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA) announced the 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban as the recipient of the 11th annual Family Vehicle of the Year award and the 2021 Genesis G80 as the Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year during a virtual award presentation.

    MAMA, a nonprofit association comprised of automotive journalists and public relations professionals, developed these two awards to assist car-shopping families in making a wise and decision when selecting a new vehicle.

    “The Family Vehicle of the Year Award is different from others in that it’s focused on just one extremely important category of vehicle,” said MAMA President Harvey Briggs. “Whether mainstream or luxury, families need a vehicle that’s versatile, comfortable, reliable, capable, and provides a good value for the money. More than 90 journalists participated in the voting based on their experience with the entrants, making the Chevy Tahoe and Suburban and Genesis G80 deserving winners in a very competitive field.”

    In addition to the winners, mainstream finalists were the Hyundai Sonata and Toyota Highlander for Family Vehicle of the Year and the Cadillac Escalade and Lincoln Corsair for the luxury category. To qualify for the award, vehicles had to have four doors and be new or significantly updated within the past year.


    “It’s an honor to receive recognition for Tahoe and Suburban as the Family Vehicle of the Year, a role these vehicles have embraced for decades,” said Chevrolet Trucks Marketing Director Bob Krapes. “Both Tahoe and Suburban are iconic vehicles that have been transformed for this generation to offer more of the space and technologies families love and need for life’s journeys.”


    “We are delighted that the Midwest Automotive Media Association has named the all-new Genesis G80 as 2021 Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year,” said Genesis Motor North America President & CEO Mark Del Rosso. “With its bold new design, world-class technologies, and refined driving experience, we are pleased that the 2021 G80 has captured the hearts and minds of customers and industry experts in the Midwest and across the country.”


    Voting for the 2022 MAMA Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards will begin at the 2021 MAMA Rally, currently scheduled to take place Oct. 13-14 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.

    For more information about the Midwest Automotive Media Association and its Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards, please visit www.mamaonline.org.


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    About the Midwest Automotive Media Association

    Founded in 1991, and now in its 30th year, the Midwest Automotive Media Association comprises 211 automotive journalists and public relations professionals from across the country – though based in the Chicago area. The organization’s primary purpose is to provide a forum for newsworthy people, major issues and new products in the auto industry.

  • 14 Jan 2021 9:01 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA), an organization comprised of automotive journalists and related industry professionals, elected its 2021 board of directors during its annual January business meeting, which was held virtually via Zoom. Founded in 1991, MAMA celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.


    Harvey Briggs will step into the role of MAMA President. Robert Duffer was elected as Senior Vice President, and Jennifer Newman was re-elected to a second term as Vice President of Membership.

    MAMA Secretary Kelley Enright, Treasurer Larry Nutson and Communications Director Jennifer Morand will carry out the second year of their two-year terms.  

    Damon Bell, who served as MAMA President from 2019-2020, will transition to a two-year term as President Emeritus.  

    During the annual business meeting it was reported that the association currently maintains a membership of 236 automotive journalists and industry professionals serving in the automotive industry or related fields.

    It was also announced that the winners of MAMA’s annual Family Vehicle of the Year and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year awards will be announced via a virtual event in February.

    The 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban, 2020 Hyundai Sonata and 2020 Toyota Highlander are the finalists for the MAMA Family Vehicle of the Year Award, and the 2021 Cadillac Escalade, 2021 Genesis G80 and 2020 Lincoln Corsair are the finalists for the luxury category.

    For more information on the Midwest Automotive Media Association and related news, visit www.mamaonline.org.

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    About the Midwest Automotive Media Association

    Founded in 1991, and now in its 30th year, the Midwest Automotive Media Association comprises 236 automotive journalists and public relations professionals from across the country – though based in the Chicago area. The organization’s primary purpose is to provide a forum for newsworthy people, major issues and new products in the auto industry.

  • 06 Jan 2021 1:39 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The final MAMA eMeet of the 2020 calendar year was hosted by Kia who took the opportunity to share updates on the 2021 Sorento. Kia Product Strategy Manager, Mark Savino, led the presentation to more than 50 MAMA media members and he fielded a live Q&A at the end of the online meeting.


    Savino shared that while the Sorento nameplate is pushing 20 years of U.S. history, it has been completely redesigned for 2021 offering more capability, more safety technology, heightened performance and a bolder design. The all-new Sorento hit dealerships nationwide in December.

    According to Kia, the 2021 Sorento features an “emotionally expressive” design with an all-new N3 platform, enabling the vehicle to be lighter and stronger. Picking up styling cues from big brother Telluride, the Sorento slots between the three-row Telluride SUV and the compact Sportage. The exterior is more angular and muscular while the interior incorporates bolder and more horizontal lines emphasizing its spaciousness. Another interior bonus is the newly added second-row captains chairs, which can t be found in Sorento s segment competitors.


    In terms of technology, the all-new Sorento comes with an 8-inch standard touchscreen display or an available 10.25-inch HD touchscreen (which is shared with the Telluride).

    The new Sorento is packed with the latest and most advanced safety tech from Kia, including:

    • Forward collision-avoidance assist
    • Lane keeping assist
    • Lane following assist
    • Driver attention warning and lead car departure warning
    • Rear occupant alert with ultrasonic sensors
    • Blind-spot collision-avoidance assist and parallel exit
    • Rear cross-traffic collision-avoidance assist
    • Smart Cruise with Stop & Go
    • Forward collision-avoidance assist
    • Safe exit assist

    According to Kia, there s a Sorento for everyone” as the SUV will be offered in five different trim levels: LX, S, EX, SX and SX-Prestige and available with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

    For the first time, three new distinct Sorento models will be offered:


    - X-Line: All-new for Sorento, the new X-Line appearance package features 1-inch higher ground clearance, improved approach/departure angles, more advanced AWD with snow-mode and a more robust roof rack than the outgoing model.

    - SX-Prestige: Offered in a sapphire blue with gloss black accents. According to Savino, Kia’s hero model is the SX-Prestige AWD with X-Line appearance package, a variant that further demonstrates the transformation of the Sorento into a more premium and tech-oriented SUV. The X-Line SX-Prestige AWD trim includes:

    ·   Standard torque-on-demand AWD with center locking differential and downhill descent control

    ·   Increased ride height to 8.3-inch (a 1-inch increase over standard ride height)

    ·   Exclusive bumper and exterior details, such as unique 20-inch alloy wheels and bridge-type roof rack

    - Hybrid (notable as this is Kia’s first-ever hybrid SUV)


    *Plug-in Hybrid variant is forthcoming in 2021

    Four all-new powertrains are also offered on the 2021 Sorento including: 2.5-liter naturally aspirated 4-cylinder gas engine, 2.5-liter turbo, HEV, and PHEV (coming next year).

    Pricing for the 2021 Sorento starts just below $30,000 ($29,390 to be exact) for the LX front-wheel drive and climbs to $42,590 for the top-level X-Line SX-Prestige AWD trim.

    Additional MAMA eMeets will be scheduled for after the New Year; additional updates are forthcoming.

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