Ten of the best


Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS - Ler­ato Matebese

The South African Guild of Mo­tor­ing Jour­nal­ists has an­nounced the 10 fi­nal­ists for the 2018 Wes­bank South African Car of the Year.

This fol­lows an elec­tronic vote by a jury com­pris­ing 26 guild mem­bers, in­clud­ing yours truly. After a list of 21 semi­fi­nal­ists was cre­ated from a gen­eral vote by the guild’s full mem­bers, the 10 ve­hi­cles that re­ceived the most votes are: Alfa Romeo Giulia 2.0 Base; Audi Q5 2.0TDI Sport qu­at­tro S-tronic; BMW 520d Step­tronic; Kia Pi­canto 1.2 Style; Land Rover Dis­cov­ery TD6 SE; Peu­geot 3008 1.6THP Al­lure; Porsche Panam­era 4S; Suzuki Ig­nis 1.2 GLX; Toy­ota C-HR 1.2T Plus CVT and the Volvo S90 D5 In­scrip­tion AWD Geartronic.

Each fi­nal­ist will be put through its paces over two days’ test­ing in Jan­uary 2018 after which the win­ner will be an­nounced at a gala event in March.

Now in its 31st year, the com­pe­ti­tion re­mains SA’s longestrun­ning and most-cov­eted car award. Judg­ing by the fi­nal­ists, it is rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the new ve­hi­cle land­scape and the mar­kets that buy­ers con­tinue to buy into. The boom that is the cross­over and SUV seg­ment is ev­i­dent even here, with no less than four of the fi­nal­ists be­ing of this va­ri­ety.

Of the man­u­fac­tur­ers that made the fi­nal­ists, BMW has won the com­pe­ti­tion a record six times — in 1988, 1990, 1993, 1997, 2001 and 2011. Three of those wins were with a 5 Series. Volvo has won it twice, with the S40 in 2005 and the XC90 in 2016. Porsche has won the com­pe­ti­tion three times with the Boxster in 2013, the Cay­man S in 2014 and the Macan in 2015. Audi has won three times, with the A4 1.8 in 1996, the A4 1.9 TDi in 2002 and the Audi A3 Sport­back 2.0T in 2006.

Toy­ota won with the Corolla twice, first in the in­au­gu­ral year, 1986, and in 1989.

Alfa Romeo took the ac­co­lade in 1999 with the 156 sedan.

The 10 fi­nal­ists for the 2018 South African Car of the Year ti­tle.

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