First prizes of the LA Auto Show announced

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Influential auto publications have started to name their favorite vehicles ahead of the start of the Los Angeles Auto Show.

At the General Motors Michigan Wind Tunnel facility on November 16, the company's Vice Chairman picked up one of many awards expected for the Chevrolet Volt, Motor Trend 's 2011 Car of the Year Award.

The magazine's editors wrote "we expected a science experiment, but this is a moon shot," describing the Volt as "a fully functional, no-compromise compact automobile that offers consumers real benefits in terms of lower running costs."

GreenCarReports , meanwhile, selected the Nissan Leaf as its "Best Green Car to Buy 2011" November 16, picking it from other finalists that included the Volt, 2011 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, 2011 Lexus CT 200h, and the 2011 Honda CR-Z.

GreenCarReports editor Joel Voelcker described the 2011 Leaf as a "huge step for green car shoppers," adding "the Leaf simply acts like any conventional passenger vehicle, but one with a purpose-to turn on car shoppers to electric cars, for once and for all."

The two prizes are coups for both Chevrolet and Nissan, although both automakers are awaiting the results of the prestigious Green Car of the Year Award, set to be announced November 17.

GreenCarReports' sister publications, TheCarConnection and MotorAuthority also named their Best Cars to Buy.

TheCarConnection selected the 2011 Hyundai Sonata as its 2011 Best Car to Buy, saying that the vehicle "changes the mid-size sedan game."

"Exceptional safety, fuel economy and standard features" were among the features that earned the Sonata a finish ahead of competitors such as the 2011 Kia Optima, the 2011 Buick Regal, and the 2011 Ford Explorer.

MotorAuthority, which focuses on high end sports cars, sedans and SUVs priced higher than $50,000 (€36,730), chose the Cadillac CTS-V Coupe as its "Best Car to Buy."

The list of finalists for its prize also included new 2011 models such as the Bentley Mulsanne, the Aston Martin V12 Vantage, the Ford Shelby GT500, the Infiniti M56, and the Hyundai Equus.

The LA Auto Show is open to the public November 19-28 in Los Angeles, California.

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