Archive for the ‘PAPA News’ Category

Jeep Grand Cherokee is PAPA’s Best of the Southwest

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Posted 13 Nov 2015 — by Cathy Luebke
Category PAPA News, Scrap Book

Jeep Grand Cherokee received Phoenix Automotive Press Association’s first Best of the Southwest award as part of the Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year program last month in Chandler.
This is ALV’s fourth year in Phoenix bringing together hikers, kayakers, runners and other outdoor enthusiasts along with automotive journalists from around the country to select vehicles in various categories that best fit their lifestyles.
Best of the Southwest was conceived as a vehicle suited to the region’s lifestyle, including day-to-day needs and the ability to take friends and their gear safely along unpaved forest roads and desert trails, PAPA founding President Larry Edsall explained to members. It also is a vehicle that you feel good in whether out in the boonies or handing off to the valet at a fancy restaurant in Scottsdale.

Scott Brown of Chrysler with PAPA’s Bob Golfen.

“Grand Cherokee offers the best combination of class and off-road capability,” according to one ballot comment. Another said, “The Grand Cherokee is fully off-road capable with room for a family and styling for a night on the town.”
A PAPA jury narrowed the field of 20-some ALV finalists with all PAPA members eligible to vote on the final six. The five other PAPA finalists were: Dodge Durango, Mercedes-Benz GLE450 AMG, Ford Edge, Toyota Tacoma and Audi Q3

ALV award winners

It was our biggest event ever, said event co-founder Nina Russin, an automotive journalist from Phoenix.
With a new venue, expanded media day, new awards and more participants the ALV program took place over two days at the Crown Plaza San Marcos Golf Resort in Chandler.
The awards are unique with both automotive press and outdoor enthusiasts participating, Russin said. It was good to see so many returning athletes, both recreational and professional. “I fell strongly it’s an important thing to do to mix end users and journalists to see which vehicle works.”
Vehicles were judged on city, freeway and off-road routes with consideration for features including seating, cargo capability and versatility for activities such as camping, sports and road trips.

Winners in the six ALV classes were:
* Best Value Off Road: 2015 Ford F-150
* Luxury Off Road: 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee
* Luxury On Road: 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE 450
* Best Value On Road: 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander
* Best Value Family: 2015 Ford Edge
* Urban: 2015 Kia Soul

PAPA to name Best of the Southwest at ALV

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Posted 18 Sep 2015 — by Cathy Luebke
Category PAPA News

The Phoenix Automotive Press Association will present its inaugural Best of the Southwest award as part of the annual Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year competition in October.
“The winner will be chosen from ALV finalists as the vehicle that bests meets the varied needs of our Sonoran Desert lifestyle,” said PAPA President Cathy Luebke.
PAPA members will cast their votes during a media day Oct. 16 with the award to be presented at a dinner that evening. ALV awards will be judged and announced in eight categories the following day at the San Marcos Golf Resort in Chandler.
(Click the Calendar link on this page to see how you can participate.)
Also new as part of ALV this year, XPEL Technologies is sponsoring a Denise McCluggage Memorial Scholarship to be presented to an outstanding student of automotive engineering or design. Texas-based XPEL makes automotive paint and headlamp protection products.
McCluggage, a long-time member of the ALV jury panel, broke through countless glass ceilings in her career as a journalist, elite race car driver and skier, said ALV co-founder, Nina Russin.
Now in their 12th year, the Active Lifestyle Vehicle Awards are based on the opinions of more than 100 athletes, celebrities and outdoor enthusiasts who live the lifestyles automakers target in much of their marketing.
Judged by the very group of consumers they’re marketed to, vehicles awarded gain a seal of approval that goes above and beyond just that of the automotive journalists and experts who help lead the evaluation process, Russin said.
All PAPA members attending the media day will be eligible to cast ballots for Best of the Southwest. The group was started in 2001 by a small band of veteran journalists who focus on the automotive industry. It has grown to more than 60 members with monthly meetings, ride-and-drives and other unique programs.
“We have supported the ALV awards for many years and are excited to get even more involved. The winning vehicle will combine the attributes we see as important to our members, car enthusiasts and fellow Southwest residents.” said Luebke.
That means:
• It should be great for a daily commute as well as taking kids to school, the family dog to the vet and hitting the latest sales at the mall.
• It also must be able to take you, your friends and gear safely along the unpaved forest roads and desert trails common to the region.
• And finally, it should be a vehicle that you feel good in whether out in the boonies or at a fancy dinner in Scottsdale.
For more about PAPA:

PAPA joins Arizona Concours with auction preview panel, Best Story award

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Posted 29 Dec 2014 — by Cathy Luebke
Category PAPA News

The Phoenix Automotive Press Association’s annual Arizona Auction Week Preview will be part of the Arizona Concours d’Elegance in January, and PAPA will present a Best Story award to one of the classic car owners.

Best Story award Best Story award

The PAPA panel will begin at noon Saturday, Jan. 10, in the Grand Ballroom of the Arizona Biltmore, which is wehre the second annual Concours takes place the following day.
Panelists will be: Tom Cotter, known as the Indiana Jones of barn-found cars; Dave Kinney, publisher of the Hagerty Price Guide; and John Carlson, muscle car collector and chief Concours judge.
The program will run until 1:30 p.m. and will be followed by a beverage break sponsored by, and at 2 p.m., the Elegance at Speed, a panel discussion about race car design.
Admission is free for 2015 PAPA members, who should have received an email with directions for sign-up.
Only 200 seats are available and guests can purchase advance tickets through the Concours website, <> . General admission to the Concours d’Elegance, which is Sunday, Jan. 11 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., costs $75, while admission to the Saturday panels is $50.
Proceeds from the Concours help support Make-A-Wish Arizona, the founding chapter of the now international wish-granting organization.
There are 17 award classes for Concours entries this year plus four feature classes: Pierce-Arrow, competition Ferraris, cars of Carrozzeria Ghia and cars of Frank Lloyd Wright.
PAPA’s Best Story award is unique in that the “criteria isn’t the best restoration or best preserved original finish or correct to the nuts and bolts that were on the car when it came off an assembly line,” says PAPA board member Larry Edsall. Rather it’s “simply the most heart-warming or otherwise newsworthy story as judged by PAPA members,” he says.
This is the first year for the Best Story award and sixth for the Arizona Auction Week Preview. The PAPA panel and the Concours help kick off a week of classic car auctions, including RM, Barrett-Jackson, Gooding & Co., Silver, Russo & Steele, and Bonhams.
PAPA members who need sign-up information should contact Larry Edsall at