Miles Group marques win big at the 2023 WhatCar? Awards

The 2023 WhatCar? Award winners have been announced, and we’re excited to share that an array of vehicles from brands we represent have claimed titles, including the honour of being named 2023 Car of the Year.

The prestigious WhatCar? Awards have been crowning the best-in-class vehicles since 1973, and the annual accolades are highly regarded as an indispensable guide to the best cars you can purchase on the market.

Keep reading as we explore all the winners, or browse by brand below.

Please note that international imagery, concept imagery, and international specifications are referenced in this blog, speak to our product specialists for details on New Zealand models.


WhatCar? Car of the Year 2023: Volkswagen ID. Buzz

Volkswagen ID.Buzz yellow with family.

“The fully electric Volkswagen ID Buzz combines the practicality of an MPV with the comfort and refinement of a luxury SUV. This is a car that you can buy with your head and your heart, then – one that doesn’t fit neatly into an established box but which is all the better for this. In short, it moves the game on more than any other model launched in the past 12 months, so it has to be our Car of the Year.” – WhatCar?

The ID. Buzz is arriving in New Zealand in late 2024.


WhatCar? Best Small SUV Interior 2023: Audi Q2 S Line

Audi Q2 interior.

“Lots of small SUVs score well in the key disciplines of comfort, practicality and efficiency, but the Audi Q2 is the small SUV that feels most special from behind the wheel. The Q2’s approach isn’t to go over the top with glitz but to use really smart materials in all the right places. And these are set off by subtle, classy trim highlights and neat details, such as the knurled finish on the air-con controls and rotary infotainment controller. And it becomes even more appealing inside if you opt for S line trim, with aluminium pedals, a perforated leather-covered steering wheel and matching sports seats.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best Sports Car for Noise 2023: Audi R8 V10

Audi R8 V10 blue front.

“More than anything, sports cars need to thrill you. Acceleration is important, but it’s finesse and feel through corners that matter most… Key to its explosive soundtrack is the same quirk that makes this engine a bit of an oddity these days: while most other cars have small engines boosted by turbochargers, the R8 relies on the sheer size of its lungs for brute power.” – WhatCar?


WhatCar? Best Coupé SUV 2023: CUPRA Formentor

CUPRA Formentor parked front quarter in front of a sunset.

“While many coupé SUVs are just about looking suave, the Cupra Formentor sets out to prove that they can do so much more. Sure, it has a stylish design, but it also strikes a good balance between sportiness and practicality. It offers space for five adults in its smart-looking interior, plus a big boot, while also being fun to drive.”- WhatCar?


WhatCar? Best Estate Car of the Year 2023: Škoda Superb

Škoda superb parked on the hill in the mountains.

“The Superb beats some extremely talented rivals to the Estate Car of the Year title, simply because it’s the best at being an estate. If you’ve elected to buy one instead of a saloon or hatchback, you’re likely to have made that decision on the basis of practicality, and the Superb outperforms all comers in that regard.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best Family Car for Practicality 2023: Škoda Octavia

Škoda Octavia white wagon parked in front of the sea.

“There are several types of family car, but here we’re looking at traditional hatchbacks: large enough to be practical, yet compact enough to be easy and enjoyable to drive… As a car that dwarfs most of its competitors for interior and boot space, the Skoda Octavia remains the model to beat for practicality. It offers four six-footers loads of room for lounging in comfort, but it’s in the middle rear seat that you really notice the difference: a fifth occupant gets more breathing space than in nearly all rivals.” – WhatCar?


WhatCar? Family SUV of the Year 2023: Kia Sportage

Kia Sportage white parked in the city at night with the lights on.

“Cars in this class must obviously provide sufficient space for families. However, the best also offer a comfortable ride and tidy handling, and blend gutsy performance with wallet-friendly costs… As you’d expect, we’ve tested it extensively in various guises – the hybrid version going up against the rival Ford Kuga and Hyundai Tucson, and the regular petrol version taking on first the Mazda CX-5, then the Skoda Karoq and Vauxhall Grandland. And the Sportage has emerged victorious every time, confirming that it’s now the best family SUV you can buy.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Readers Choice 2023: Kia EV9

Kia EV9 concept car front.

“What Car? readers were given a 14-car shortlist, and asked to vote for the upcoming model that they’re most excited about seeing in showrooms…If you want to know the scale of the Kia EV9’s victory here, consider this: it gathered more than three times as many votes as our second-placed car, showing just how big the appetite is for this electric SUV.” – WhatCar?

The Kia EV9 is arriving on our shores in 2023.

Land Rover

WhatCar? Luxury Car of the Year 2023: Range Rover Sport

Range Rover Sport parked in front of a brick building in Christchurch.

“Saloons and SUVs both compete in this class, with the best examples combining sumptuous materials with fantastic refinement and ride comfort worthy of a magic carpet… How would you define luxury? Well, for us, the Range Rover Sport is a rolling elucidation of that word. Let’s start with comfort. The Sport pampers its driver with a 20-way adjustable seat, and affords them a view more imperious even than the one you get from the wheel of a Bentley Bentayga. Naturally, the driver’s seat is heated – as are three of the passenger seats.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best PHEV for Luxury 2023: Range Rover Sport

Range Rover Sport rear in front of a brick building in Christchurch.

“The best plug-in hybrid cars offer a long all-electric range, reducing fuel consumption, emissions and tax bills. Yet they must still drive well and not compromise on practicality… It’s understandable that the headlines for this version of the new Range Rover Sport focus on its impressive 70-mile official electric range and ultra-low 5% company car tax band, but those aren’t the only reasons why we love it. More than any other car here, you’ll choose the Sport for the way it makes you feel when you sit inside it and drive it.” – WhatCar? 

WhatCar? Best Family SUV for Off-Roading 2023: Land Rover Defender 90

Land Rover Defender 90 SE driving through a muddy river track.

“Cars in this class must obviously provide sufficient space for families. However, the best also offer a comfortable ride and tidy handling, and blend gutsy performance with wallet-friendly costs… When the going gets tough, the latest iteration of the Defender just keeps going, especially in three-door 90 guise. It’s more manoeuvrable than the longer 110 and 130 models and can tackle even steeper slopes. You can tailor it to suit different types of terrain at the press of a button, and our preferred D250 3.0-litre diesel engine is ideal for low-speed slogging.” – WhatCar?


WhatCar? Reliability Award 2023: Lexus

Lexus NX 450 Front Grille

“In our 2022 Reliability Survey, owners told us about almost 25,000 cars, with each model given a rating based on the number of faults, and the time and cost of repairs… There are three reasons why the luxury brand owned by Toyota topped our Reliability Survey for the sixth consecutive year in 2022: its cars rarely go wrong, when they do its technicians fix them swiftly, and any repairs needed are usually free. Overall, only 6% of the Lexus models we were told about suffered faults, and most of those were minor. The majority could still be driven and 69% were repaired in a day or less.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? PHEV of the Year 2023: Lexus NX 450+ Premium Pack

Lexus NX 450 driving down a hill.

“The best plug-in hybrid cars offer a long all-electric range, reducing fuel consumption, emissions and tax bills. Yet they must still drive well and not compromise on practicality… it’s only relatively recently that the brand has embraced plug-in hybrids, with the Lexus NX 450h+ being the first of them. Yet it’s an exceptionally good one, which is why it was our favourite plug-in hybrid last year, too.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best Convertible for Luxury: Lexus LC

Lexus LC Convertible

“A good convertible should obviously offer wind-in-the-hair thrills, but, we’re looking for a car that also delivers an enjoyable drive and a four-seat interior that makes you feel special… However you choose to define luxury, the Lexus LC Convertible has you covered. Do you think luxury means having the nicest interior? Good news, because the materials used inside the LC put even those of the costlier Aston Martin DB11 Volante to shame. Alternatively, perhaps luxury means having every toy in the box – in which case the LC wins again, because you get everything from 20in alloys to heated and cooled leather seats as standard.” – WhatCar?


WhatCar? Best Hot Hatch Engine 2023: Mercedes-AMG A45

Mercedes-AMG A45 hatchback parked.

“Hot hatches should make even the most mundane of drives feel magical. However, this ability to entertain shouldn’t come at the expense of everyday usability… Some hot hatches have great engines, but few can match the motorsport-derived 2.0-litre four-cylinder unit in the Mercedes-AMG A45 S. Pumping out a whopping 415bhp, it’s one of the most powerful engines of its size in production and, as you’d expect, makes the A45 indecently quick.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best Electric Car for Long Distances 2023: Mercedes-AMG EQE 350

Mercedes-Benz EQE electric sedan.

“More than 4.5 metres long, the best large electric cars have the range, comfort, performance and practicality to act as your sole transport… While you have to sacrifice some range for the Volkswagen ID Buzz’s distinctive shape, this isn’t an issue in the Mercedes EQE. This luxury saloon is so slippery through the air that it can go farther between charges than almost any other electric car on sale – not just the ID Buzz, but also the far pricier BMW i7 and every Tesla available in the UK.” – WhatCar?

The EQE is arriving soon, learn more about this highly-anticipated model below.


WhatCar? Best Electric 7-Seater 2023: Peugeot E-Partner

Peugeot E-Partner Van

“Electric cars are kind of a big deal, but can you make battery-powered motoring work if your family has too many members to count on one hand? Well, yes, and we think the Peugeot e-Partner is the way to do it. As an electric van-based MPV, the Peugeot does a stellar job of mixing practicality with creature comforts. That starts with the tall body shape, which gives everyone loads of head room.” – WhatCar?


WhatCar? Sports Car of the Year 2023: Porsche 718 Cayman GTS

Porsche Cayman 718 GTS

“It was Albert Einstein who once said: “There’s nothing known as perfect.” While we’re not going to argue with a genius, we’re pretty sure he’d have agreed that the Porsche 718 Cayman GTS comes pretty close to sports car perfection. In fact, it speaks volumes that it has now claimed our Sports Car of the Year award for three years in a row.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Performance Car of the Year 2023: Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo 4S

Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo 4S in blue.

“To say that the Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo is an outstanding performance car that just happens to be electric is to do it a disservice, because there’s so much more to it than just the absence of a combustion engine. You see, the electric nature of the Cross Turismo actually enhances the driving thrills. In a petrol-engined performance car, there’s often a slight delay between you pressing the accelerator pedal and the car reacting, but with the Cross Turismo it’s as fast as flicking a switch. Indeed, you’re likely to need to give your passengers a warning before you bury your foot to the floor, such is the force that pushes you back into your seat.” – WhatCar?

WhatCar? Best Sports SUV for Thrills 2023: Porsche Cayenne Coupé GTS

Porsche Cayenne Coupe Red rear view.

“If you asked us to choose a sports SUV based purely on driver appeal, we’d pick the Porsche Cayenne Coupé GTS quicker than you can say ‘driving thrills’, because nothing else comes close in this respect. With a twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 engine pumping out 453bhp, the GTS is outrageously fast, sprinting from 0-62mph in 4.5sec. It’s not just a one-trick pony, though; the GTS is equally good at going around corners. In fact, with optional active anti-roll bars added, it displays superb body control and allows for great precision through corners; it’s incredibly agile for a car that weighs 2.2 tonnes.” – WhatCar?

View all winners

View all winners of the 2023 WhatCar? Awards

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