Autocar Car of the Year 2022 Winners Announced

The winners of the 2022 Autocar Car of the Year awards have been announced, and we’re proud to share that a variety of vehicles from brands we represent have claimed titles.

The renowned Autocar Car of the Year awards showcases the best-in-class vehicles that were introduced to the market in the past 12 months. Points are given based on a variety of factors, including value for money, space, spec, and style, along with other elements including aftersales service. Performance is key too, in addition to the impact the vehicle has on the environment with its emissions. High marks are also awarded for practicality and safety.

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

Kia EV6: Autocar’s Most Electrifying Car of the Year

blue kia ev6

Photo: Autocar NZ

“Kia’s new EV6 makes a strong first impression, for it’s not your usual-looking vehicle. The styling is a break from the norm; long and wide but low and certainly eye-catching. Utilising an 800V architecture allows for super-fast charging at DC juice points while the big battery and notable efficiency, particularly in town running, mean no worries about range. We liked the various set-up options for brake regeneration and the controlled ride is a definite plus; the effort Kia puts into the suspension is noteworthy.” – Autocar New Zealand

Kia Niro: Autocar’s Eco Car of the Year

kia niro electric vehicle

We realise that an EV is not the solution for everyone concerned about their emissions when it comes to getting about the place. Sure there’s walking and cycling, but really… Kia’s Niro is something that covers many needs with its low- to no-emissions powertrain options including hybrid, plug-in hybrid and full electric. Don’t want to charge? The hybrid is the go with a great range (up to 750km on a tank) and with its electric bits helping out, the combined fuel use figure is 4.4L/100km (101g/km) which means a $3418 rebate.  – Autocar New Zealand

Mercedes-Benz C-Class: Autocar’s Luxury Car of the Year

mercedes-benz c-class sedan

Photo: Autocar NZ

“Call us old-fashioned but we chose the fifth-generation C-Class in this category. Because Merc sells more SUVs these days, C-Class is a sedan-only affair here now. To us, that gives it a degree of exclusivity. We liked the infusion of tech in the powertrain department, the small turbo engines supplemented with mild hybrid 48v systems to not only save gas but boost low-end torque, making for effortless progress, a luxury trademark. There’s also a plug-in hybrid with a very useful 100km of electric range and AMG models are coming soon too.” – Autocar New Zealand

Nissan X-TRAIL: Autocar’s Family Car of the Year

nissan x-trail

“Wagons have always made good family cars. It’s just that in the 2000s, a five-door with a big boot is now called an SUV. And Kiwis can’t get enough of them. Nissan’s new X-Trail lands in this popular sector, fronting with plenty of choices for buyers, including a novel hybrid with EV-like drive appeal. There’s a good range of conventional models too with the option of front- and AWD, and sevens seats, while the top models are brimming with kit.” – Autocar New Zealand

Volvo C40: Autocar’s Most Desirable Car of the Year

volvo c40

“Guess it was inevitable that we would admire this new electric SUV from Volvo, given it shares its DNA with our overall COTY from 2021, the Polestar 2. Most thought the look worked too; thank those proportions, it’s a well balanced visual package. Starting at $87,500, the C40 doesn’t get the rebate but that we guess that will ensure a tad more exclusivity. Unlike a Tesla Model Y, it’s not something you’ll see every other minute, and it’s a much nicer thing to be seen in.” – Autocar New Zealand

Škoda Fabia: Autocar’s Urban Car of the Year

Škoda fabia monte carlo

“Another good choice for such environs is the new Skoda Fabia, our Urban COTY. While many brands are pulling out of the small car market here, Skoda is offering a smart choice in its all-new Fabia. Now a bigger, more practical offering, it’s positioned here with a high specification in a sporty Monte Carlo guise. Cheaper than most high-spec compact SUVs (that have eaten the small car market share), this drives competently, gets a handy rebate, and while it’s a sweet city slicker, it does good work too on those out-of-town jaunts.” – Autocar New Zealand

Opel Mokka: Autocar’s Hipster’s Car of the Year

opel mokka

“If you want to stand out in the sea of same-same small SUVS, opt for the Opel Mokka, our Hipster’s COTY. If you’ve been targeted by the marketing, you’ll know what we mean. It’s styled to make an impact, and in Mokka-e guise, sends the right message. The “bold and pure” design ethic and funky two-tone paint options give it street presence, and its compact dimensions and driver conveniences see it at home in the city.” – Autocar New Zealand

Toyota GR86: Autocar’s Most Dynamic Car of the Year

toyota gr86

“If you are one that longs for a decent driver’s car, and don’t need five-door practicalities, the Toyota GR86 is for you, which we name as our Most Dynamic COTY. It’s low slung coupe formula might not work for everyone, but with an emphasis on honing the good bits and giving it a bit more motor, the GR86 is a driver’s dream with quick and accurate steering, superb chassis balance, telling suspension compliance and a great acting six-speed manual.” – Autocar New Zealand

View all winners

View all winners of the 2022 Autocar Car of the Year Awards

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