The winner of the 2009 European Car of the Year title has been announced – and it’s the Vauxhall Insignia.
Judged by 59 senior motoring journalists from 23 European countries, the Insignia secured its Car of the Year accolade by polling 321 total votes – beating the new Ford Fiesta into second place by just a single point.
This victory is an impressive achievement when you consider the almost universal derision of its lacklustre forebear, the Vectra.
Golf gets third
Third place was awarded to the latest version of the Volkswagen Golf, which polled 223 votes. The runners-up are the Citroen C5 (198 votes), Alfa Romeo MiTo (148), Skoda Superb (144), and new Renault Megane (121).
These seven cars were voted onto the shortlist in October, selected by the jurors from all of the cars to go on sale in the last 12 months – 37 vehicles in all this year.
The European Car of the Year competition has now been running for 46 years, although its decisions have not always matched the mood of the car buying public.
Previous winners include the Alfa Romeo 147 (2001), Fiat Bravo/a (1996), Citroen XM (1990) and Porsche 928 (1978).
Undoubtedly an upset
One juror described the Insignia’s victory as ‘undoubtedly something of an upset,’ suggesting that: ‘the Ford Fiesta seemed to many a winning contender. But in the end, the Insignia deserved to triumph and it did.’
We have to agree: we’re surprised the exceptional new Fiesta didn’t win, although we do acknowledge that the new Insignia is a fine car in many areas.
However, all the cars on the Car of the Year shortlist are so new that nothing is yet known about their reliability or owner satisfaction – two of the key factors Which? judges use to decide our award-winners and Best Buy cars.
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