Which model will be crowned World Car of the Year?
2017 Jaguar XE (photo: Jaguar)
Published Wednesday, January 27, 2016 11:46AM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, January 27, 2016 11:48AM EST
The finalists for the 2016 World Car of the Year award have been announced ahead of the official ceremony at the New York Auto Show on March 24.
Split into five categories, honors are also bestowed on the best luxury car, best performance car, and the greenest car of the year alongside a special award for design as judged by a global panel of 73 motoring journalists.
And this year, Jaguar Land Rover has managed to scoop more nominations -- six -- than any other company and has at least one vehicle competing in every category other than for Green Car of the Year. The Jaguar XE and Land Rover Discovery Sport are both finalists in the World Car of the Year category, where they will do battle with the Audi A4, BMW X1, Hyundai Tucson, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Toyota Prius, Skoda Superb and two Mazdas -- the CX-3 and MX-5.
The Jaguar XF is one of five finalists in the Luxury category but as good as the new sedan is, it faces huge competition. The Audi Q7, BMW 7 Series, Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe and the formidable Volvo XC90 are also nominees.
In an unusual twist, the Range Rover Sport SVR, a supercharged V8 SUV has made the Performance Car of the Year shortlist, a category usually dominated by Italian marques. However, for 2016 Ferrari and Lamborghini are conspicuous by their absence and have instead made room for the Audi R8 Coupé, Honda Civic Type R, the Mercedes-AMG C 63 Coupé and the new Chevrolet Camaro. As such, the category is going to be very difficult to judge as each car is outstanding in very different ways. However, the all-round package of performance, practically and affordability offered by the Camaro could make it the winner.
In the Green Car category there is a genuine mix of drivetrain technologies in competition. The Chevrolet Volt is the early favorite but the BMW 330e and Volkswagen Passat GTE are both impressive plug-in hybrids that balance performance and efficiency very well. The latest-generation Toyota Prius has also made the list, as has the company's first commercially available hydrogen fuel cell car, the Mirai.
Unlike the other categories, the design award shortlist has been drawn up by a panel of six design experts. The five finalists are the Cadillac CT6, Mazda CX-3, Mazda MX-5, Jaguar XF and the Land Rover Discovery Sport.
At the Geneva Motor Show on March 1, each of the categories will be cut down to three finalists and the winner of the European Car of the Year Awards will be announced.