The Toyota Aygo has been named the Axa Northern Ireland car of the year 2006-07 at a ceremony in Belfast.
Toyota was presented with its award by members of the Ulster Motoring Writers Association (UMWA) at a prestigious event on March 15th.
Jim McCauley, chairman of the UMWA, said that the end result was a tight decision but emphasised that the Aygo was a worthy winner.
"Of all the vehicles judged in this year’s competition the Toyota Aygo received the ultimate accolade for its charm, performance, economy and low running costs," Mr McCauley said.
"Although one of three cars built on the same platform, the overall personality of the Aygo and the thorough integration of its corporate identity saw it nudge through to take the honours."
The Aygo came first ahead of the Citroen C1 in the small car category and went on to overcome stiff competition in the form of the other group winners.
They were the BMW 330d, which won the medium car category, the Lexus IS250, from the executive car group, the Audi RS4 from the sporting segment and the Range Rover Sport from the leisure car category.
Renault was presented with the safety engineering award for its attainment of a five-star Euro NCAP rating.