The World Car of the Year jury has spoken
WORLD CAR OF THE YEAR Volvo’s mid-size luxury SUV XC60 impressed the 82-member jury with its design, features and safety to clinch the award over other nominees. It also was awarded the North American Utility of the Year and European Car of the Year, in separate award functions previously. Notably, Volvo president and CEO, Håkan Samuelsson, was also recently named World Car Person of the Year by the same committee. The other top two finalists this year were the Mazda CX-5 and the Range Rover Velar.
WORLD LUXURY CAR Audi’s flagship A8 brought home the brand’s ninth victory at the World Car Awards. This category was started in 2014 to recognise higher priced premium models. The jury assessed the appeal, comfort, driving performance, environmental consideration, market relevance and price-performance ratio. The tech-packed A8 boasts of innovative touch controls with haptic feedback, a choice of hybrid powertrain and over 40 driver assistance systems. The other top two were the Cayenne and Panamera from Porsche.
WORLD GREEN CAR The second-generation Nissan Leaf took home the World Green Car award. Jurors considered the use of advanced power plant technology and the overall environmental impact of the nominees, including tailpipe emissions and consumption figures. With a 40kWh battery and EPA-estimated range of 240km, the Leaf was chosen over the BMW 530e and Chrysler
Pacifica Hybrid in the top three. This category came into being in 2016 and the Leaf is the first all-electric vehicle to win the title.
WORLD CAR DESIGN OF THE YEAR It’s hard to disagree with the jury’s decision to award World Car Design of the Year to the Range Rover Velar. Gerry McGovern, chief design officer at Land Rover, calls the Velar an exercise in reductionism. This philosophy emphasises a bare-bones approach to design, with perfect proportions and pure lines, while the modernist approach speaks for a natural integration of materials and technology. The Velar beat out the Lexus LC500 and the Volvo XC60 for the title of the most beautiful car in the world.
WORLD PERFORMANCE CAR This win for the BMW M5 is the first performance award for BMW and seventh World Car award overall. Candidates for the award had to produced in numbers over 2,000 units per year, be overtly performance focused and be available on at least two continents. Swinging votes in the M5’s favour were probably its 4.4-litre V8 with 600bhp and 750Nm torque and M-specific all-wheel drive with rear-wheel drive only capability. The M5 was chosen over the Honda Civic Type-R and Lexus LC500.
WORLD URBAN CAR OF THE YEAR The VW Polo appealed to the selection committee, who were judging vehicles especially suited for use in heavy traffic areas of cities. The new MQB-platform based Polo is one of the most advanced small cars available, with a comprehensive suite of driver assistance tech like the City Emergency Braking and Pedestrian Monitoring systems. The Polo was up against competition like the Suzuki Swift and Ford Fiesta, which made up the top three.
Ralf Speth, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover, celebrates the World Car Design of the Year award for the Velar
Filip Brabec, vice president, product management, Audi North America, was on hand to receive the World Luxury Car award
Dan Mohnke, senior vice president, sales and marketing, Nissan America, accepts the World Green Car award
Anders Gustaffson, CEO of Volvo US, receives the coveted World Car of the Year award at the ceremony held at the New York International Auto Show 2018
Special night in the Big Apple for all the representatives of the winning manufacturers and the jury members, made up of experienced automobile journalists from across the globe
Trudy Hardy, vice president, marketing, BMW of North America, speaks on the occasion of the World Performance Car award
Klaus Bischoff, head of design, Volkswagen receives the award for the World Urban Car of the Year