Last year at a media event, was the first time I’d heard of the Texas Truck Rodeo. I love trucks. I’m in love with cowboys. So, I knew, I needed to learn more about this truck rodeo, and how to score an invite! Visions of cowboys in trucks, towing cattle, loading ranch equipment, and getting muddy filled my imagination. I might have been a little disappointed when I learned the Texas Truck Rodeo isn’t a competition with cowboys….
There’s no calf roping or eight second rides at this rodeo, and in a way, that’s good news. Because when you have over 60 auto journalists driving and judging 75 trucks and SUVs, you want a lot more than eight seconds behind the wheel. A self proclaimed truck fanatic, I was asked over and over again, “How do you like your first truck rodeo?”
I’m like a kid in a toy store for the first time, excited, overwhelmed and kind of in shock. Then, I was the kid that just heard I could
buy any toy I wanteddrive any and all of the vehicles in front of me!
I drove truck after truck on the asphalt, through a creek, over rocks, up hills and down. I was in my happy place, as I learned about new technology, drove the Ram EcoDiesel truck for the first time, and spent even more time behind the wheel of the 2015 Ford F-150. Everything was awesome, but the highlight of my first Texas Truck Rodeo…riding in the back of the Ford F-150 Platinum while Sue Mead gave us tips on how to drive off road like a pro.
“This year, the Texas Truck Rodeo had a record number of vehicles on hand for our members to evaluate,’ said Michael Marrs, president of TAWA, “We want to thank all of our partners in the automotive industry as well as sponsors for making this such a great event.”
Even though there’s no barrel racing or bronc busting at the Texas Truck Rodeo, there’s still a competition. GMC, Toyota, Ford, Chevrolet, Ram, Jeep, and more, brought their latest and greatest so we could rate them and choose winners. The most coveted trophy: Texas Truck of the Year. And, the winners are:
SUV of Texas
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Jeep® Grand Cherokee wins “SUV of Texas” for the fifth consecutive year
Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Cherokee take consecutive year over year titles, with Jeep Brand SUVs victorious in every category entered
“We are extremely delighted and proud that for the fifth consecutive year, the respected and influential Texas auto writers have named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the SUV of Texas,” said Mike Manley, President and CEO — Jeep Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. “Even more impressive is the fact that Jeep vehicles won every single category in which they were entered, and were recognized for their unmatched 4×4 capability, fuel economy, luxury and overall performance.
“With Jeep sales up 45 percent so far this year, Texas remains a tremendously important SUV market,” Manley added. “Over the past five years, we’ve proven that winning these TAWA awards increases Jeep showroom traffic and sales.”
CUV of Texas
2015 Lincoln MKC (no, Matthew McConaughey wasn’t there to lobby for our votes)
Full-Size Luxury SUV
2015 GMC Yukon Denali
Mid Size Luxury SUV
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit EcoDiesel 4×4
Compact Luxury SUV
2015 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque 5-door
Truck Line of Texas
Truck of Texas
2015 Ford F-150
Doug Scott, marketing manager of Ford’s truck group, said, “This is a significant honor, one of the three big ones along with the Motor Trend and North American Truck of the year awards. Our entire truck team is proud and honored to win the Truck of Texas trophy.”
Off Road Pick-Up
2015 Ram Power Wagon
Heavy Duty Pick-Up
2015 Ram 2500 Longhorn-2nd consecutive year for Ram winning Heavy Duty Pick-Up of Texas
2015 Ford F-150 Platinum 4X4 Super Crew
Full Size Pick Up
2015 Ford F150 King Ranch 4×4 SuperCrew
2015 Chevrolet Colorado Crew Cab 4WD
Off-Road Utility Vehicle
2015 Jeep Wrangler
Chrysler 3.0 liter EcoDiesel V6
Chrysler Uconnect Access
Ford F-150 Aluminum Alloy Body
2015 Ford Transit 250MR
Want to know more about the Texas Truck Rodeo, check out the Texas Auto Writer’s Association for details!