Winning UX design teams will receive their trophies Nov. 17 during Automotive Tech Week in Novi, MIwhere winning vehicles will be on display.

Two premium SUVs, two compact cars, three battery-electric vehicles, a high-end pickup truck, a stunning German luxury sedan and a minivan with throw pillows make up the 2021 Wards 10 Best UX list, demonstrating that a great user experience must cross all vehicle segments.

In this sixth year of the 10 Best UX competition, only four automotive brands return as repeat winners from 2020 – Ford, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen. Stellantis has two winners on this year’s list – from its Jeep and Chrysler brands.

Ford also has two winners – the F-150 pickup and Mustang Mach-E – and those who have been keeping score know that Ford achieved two triple crowns, as both the F-150 and Mach-E also earned spots this year on Wards 10 Best Interiors and Wards 10 Best Engines & Propulsion Systems lists.

This year’s honorees:

  • Cadillac Escalade
  • Chrysler Pacifica
  • Ford F-150
  • Ford Mustang Mach-E
  • Honda Civic
  • Hyundai Elantra
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee L
  • Mercedes-Benz S-Class
  • Polestar 2
  • Volkswagen ID.4

Over the past two weeks, this year’s Wards 10 Best UX winners have been identified one day at a time, in random non-alphabetical order.

Six Wards judges assess the user-friendliness of technology onboard such as touchscreens, smartphone pairing, voice-control navigation, head-up displays and the effectiveness of driver-assistance technologies, including adaptive cruise control and blindspot monitoring.

001 2021 10 Best UX

A key question we seek to answer with each vehicle we evaluate: Are controls and infotainment menus intuitive and easy to use, or are they a source of frustration that leave drivers and passengers overwhelmed and irritated?

The Wards judges selected the winners after evaluating 33 eligible vehicles with all-new or significantly upgraded UX features. Because of the inherent overlap between the two competitions, the same 33 nominees that were evaluated for Wards 10 Best Interiors were scored at the same time for Wards 10 Best UX.

Landing on both lists this year are the Honda Civic, Jeep Grand Cherokee L and Mercedes-Benz S-Class, in addition to the F-150 and Mach-E.

The 2021 Wards 10 Best UX recipients will be honored in a Nov. 17 ceremony during our Automotive Tech Week, which begins Nov. 15 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, MI.

Also during Automotive Tech Week, winning teams will be honored Nov. 15 for Wards 10 Best Engines & Propulsion Systems and on Nov. 16 for Wards 10 Best Interiors.

Because COVID-19 prohibited live events earlier in the year, ATW combines elements of TU-Automotive Detroit, WardsAuto Interiors & UX Conferences, WardsAuto Engine & Propulsion Summit and ADAS & Autonomous Vehicles.

By Tara