Astra’s Euro ti­tle

Fam­ily favourite takes the top award

Rutherglen Reformer - - Motors -

World fa­mous brands and cars worth mil­lions were on show at the Geneva Mo­tor Show last week but a fam­ily hatch built in Bri­tain walked away with the top prize.

The all-new Vaux­hall Astra – the As­so­ci­a­tion of Scot­tish Mo­tor­ing Writer’s Car of the Year – was named Euro­pean Car of the Year 2016 at the big event.

Built at Vaux­hall’s Ellesmere Port plant in Cheshire, the Astra re­ceived a to­tal of 309 points com­pared to 294 for the Volvo XC90 and 202 for the Mazda MX-5.

This year has al­ready been hugely suc­cess­ful for the Astra, with this award the lat­est in a list that also in­cludes a Fam­ily Car cat­e­gory win at the What Car? Awards and be­ing named Scot­tish Car of the Year.

More than 40 new cars were among the list of con­tenders and the Astra emerged as the win­ner from a field of seven Car of the Year fi­nal­ists.

It is avail­able with the new- gen­er­a­tion In­tel­liLink in­fo­tain­ment sys­tem and OnS­tar, a com­pre­hen­sive pack­age, which in­cludes a high-speed 4G LTE mo­bile net­work, emer­gency re­sponse no­ti­fi­ca­tion and stolen ve­hi­cle re­cov­ery tech­nol­ogy.

OnS­tar has re­ceived plau­dits of its own re­cently, win­ning the Auto Ex­press Tech­nol­ogy and the Busi­nessCar Techies awards.

The award was de­cided by 58 lead­ing au­to­mo­tive jour­nal­ists from around Europe and pre­sented to Vaux­hall/ Opel chief Dr Kar­lThomas Neu­mann by Car of the Year pres­i­dent Hakan Mat­son.

Vaux­hall chair­man Rory Har­vey said: “We’re de­lighted the Astra has been recog­nised for yet an­other award.

“To be named Euro­pean Car of the Year by judges through­out Europe is a tes­ta­ment to the hard work that has gone into the Astra. This is the new model’s first full year of sales, and it has al­ready been well-re­ceived.”

The new Astra Sports Tourer also made its de­but on the com­pany’s stand and its hand­some looks won many ad­mir­ers.

This year is the 52nd Euro­pean Car of the Year awards and the Astra’s win marks the fifth Car of the Year ti­tle for Opel/Vaux­hall. The pre­vi­ous win­ners were the Astra Mk2, Omega, In­signia and Am­pera.

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