Silver to Kia
SECOND place in the 2010 Carsguide COTY contest went to the Kia Sportage.
The new Korean SUV was the surprise packet of COTY 2010, but only made the final field in the first place at the expense of the car from which it is cloned, the Hyundai ix35.
The Sportage edged the ix35 because it looks better, is priced cheaper and drives considerably nicer than its Korean rival - at least until Hyundai put its suspension crew to work on improvements for 2011.
Once into the COTY field the Sportage impressed on almost every front.
It’s the sort of family car that most Australians now want, with solid performance, five-star safety, great value and a driving experience that’s a lot better than a clunky off-roader.
It is a worthy runner-up against a car that dominated the judges’ votes.
BRONZE: Skoda Superb Wagon
Any car with a name like Superb needs to be good and the Skoda qualifies.
In fact, it’s better than just plain good.
The Czech wagon is cavernous inside, is incredibly flexible, good to drive, well up on safety and ideal for family work.
It also has the sort of thoughtful touches - an umbrella tucked into the back door and a clip-out torch in the boot - that will bring people back and have them bragging to their friends.
A starting price of $40,990 makes the Czech car a wonderful deal, and even the fully-loaded Elegance turbodiesel lists for less than $50,000.