As 2009 comes to a close and automotive journalists begin to take a look back at the year, so begins the tallying of awards. It was a big year for new cars, especially from the Big Three (despite their financial issues), and the Internet Car and Truck of the Year awards have released their journalistic and voter-chosen finalists.

The Camaro and Mustang have both made the list for Internet Car and Truck of the Year.

Photo courtesy of GM.

There are two distinct categories for the ICTY. One category is chosen by automotive journalists - those who have a chance to ride and drive just about every new car that comes out. The journalists include a wide cross-section of people, from self-titled “Car Coach” Lauren Fix to 23-year-old “purist” Mark Arnold. This group narrowed their field of finalists down to the Ford Fusion Hybrid, the Mazda3, and the Shelby GT500 Mustang (a good year for Ford). It is interesting to note how they embraced both absurd power and fuel efficiency.

Photo courtesy of Ford.

However, we the people have spoken, and the choice is clear: We choose performance! Voters (again) put the 540 horsepower Shelby GT500 in their top three. Joining the Mustang is the 365 horsepower Taurus SHO, powered by Ford’s new EcoBoost engine. However, giving Ford some competition is the brand new, 426 horsepower Camaro SS monster, which is more affordable than the Shelby and even the SHO. If you want your voice to be heard, you have until November 5th to vote, so get clicking!

Oh, and as far as trucks go, both journalists and consumers have chosen the Ford Raptor and Chevy Equinox as contenders. However, the journalists rounded out their top three with the Volvo XC60, while the consumers have gone with the Audi Q7. My vote is for the Raptor.

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