The eight-strong shortlist for the European Car of Year has been announced.
The European Car of the Year award was launched in 1964 by auto publications from around the continent. Organisers of the event in its current guise are Italy’s Auto, UK’s Autocar, Spain’s Autopista, Netherland’s Autovisie, France’s L’Automobile Magazine, Germany’s Stern and Sweden’s Vi Bilägare.
The first winner, in 1946, was the Rover 200. Subsequent winners include the Ford Escort Mk3 (1981), Vauxhall Astra (1985), Volkswagen Golf (1992) and Renault Mégane Scénic (1997), Toyota Prius(2005) and last year the Opel Ampera.
32 new cars entered the competition which allows only those sold in Europe in the twelve months before the announcement. The cars must also be for sale new at the time of the announcement and have achieved or expect to achieve sales exceeding 5,000.
The final eight are the Ford B-Max, Hyundai i30, Mercedes-Benz A-Class, Peugeot 208, Renault Clio, Subaru BRZ/Toyota GT86, VW Golf and Volvo V40.
The European Car of the Year’s 58-strong jury judges on 11 factors: design, comfort, safety, economy, handling, performance, functionality, environmental requirements, driver satisfaction, and price with special weight given to technical innovation and value for money.
Each member of the Jury has 25 points to apportion to at least five of the eight cars and a maximum of ten points allowed for any one vehicle.
The winner will be announced on in Geneva on March 4.