Mixed bag in NZ Car of the Year top ten

Mixed bag in NZ Car of the Year top ten

This year’s New Zealand Car of the Year Award finalists has seen a mixture of vehicles in the top ten rather than the previous year’s SUV domination.

The New Zealand Motoring Writers’ Guild (NZMWG) and The New Zealand Automobile Association will announce the winner of the 2015 New Zealand Car of the Year at the Viaduct Events Centre in Auckland on December 9.

Members of the guild and the AA who have driven the top 10 cars will independently rank each of them on some elements including value, design and quality.

The best of which will become the 2015 New Zealand Car of the Year.

For the first time, the public will also have a say with the New Zealand Car of the Year Peoples’ Choice award.

The top 10 finalists for the New Zealand Car of the Year are:

  • Audi Q7
  • BMW i3
  • Ford Mondeo
  • Hyundai Tucson
  • Land Rover Discovery Sport
  • Mazda2
  • Mazda CX-3
  • Mazda MX-5
  • Subaru Legacy/Outback
  • Volvo XC90

Sports Utility Vehicles (SUV) still feature strongly among the finalists with the Volvo XC90, Audi Q7, Land Rover Discovery Sport, Hyundai Tucson and Mazda’s CX3 – reflecting market growth.

“The real standout with all of these vehicles is the quality they bring to the market, right across the range,” says AA Motoring Services general manager Stella Stocks.

“Consumers are becoming very spoiled for choice with new cars, regardless of their price point.”

One brand is a real contender for the top award with three models in the lineup with the Mazda2, Mazda CX3 and Mazda MX5 all vying for accolades against the other seven.

“That one brand is so strongly represented in the top 10 shows it is targeting a range of markets very well,” says Stocks.

The BMW i3 electric vehicle was described by the top 10 selection panel as a clean sheet design that will become a real game changer.

Stocks says people should expect to see more of this type of vehicle in a range of classes entering future awards.

The Ford Mondeo and Subaru Legacy/Outback come from the same category, but each takes a different approach in the medium/large car segment.

Last year’s New Zealand Car of the Year went to the Mazda3.

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