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Range Rover Evoque: Auto Express New Car Awards 2011 Car of the Year

Wed, 03 Aug 2011 00:00:00 -0700

Range Rover Evoque gets the Auto Express Car of the Year gong

Last night was the annual back-slapping fest that is the Auto Express New Car Awards for 2011. And even though Cars UK weren’t there we still think we should let you know what won what so you can see if you agree.

The overall winner and Auto Express Car of the Year for 2011 was the Range Rover Evoque. Which as we have yet to drive it – and as just about no one outside Land Rover and their chosen ones have – it’s hard to comment.

We will say that we see the Evoque as the start of the new Land Rover, even if it is really just a Freelander in funky clothing. It looks very good indeed, and if Land Rover has made it feel as good as it looks then it deserves to be the overall winner.

City Car: The Hyundai i10 takes the crown here in the City Car category. And we have no real disagreement if you’re looking for cheap, reasonably stylish urban transport with a long warranty and predictable running costs. But it’s an uninspired choice.

Supermini : The Ford Fiesta takes the crown for 2011 – exactly as it did in 2010. And it probably deserves to take the gong especially now Ford has bitten the bullet to start to take on the Koreans by introducing a lower-priced entry-level model.

Premium Supermini: The Audi A1 takes the crown in the premium supermini, which will please Audi as they believe they are the only premium supermini. For our money the A1 is overpriced and harsh. The Citroen DS3 still deserves this crown.

Best Supermini MPV: The gong also belongs to the Koreans, with the Hyundai ix20 getting the award and deserving it for the same reasons as the i10.

Compact Family Car: For the third year in a row the VW Golf gets the award for the best compact family car. Again, so safe and so predictable.

Crossover: This is one category where you could make almost anything that’s not a three-box car fit what’s required. Auto Express has gone for the Skoda Yeti. We’re still rather enamoured of the Peugeot 3008

Family Car: The Skoda Superb takes the award once again and, although it’s another safer choice, it’s hard to argue against the Skoda

Compact Executive: We understand why the BMW 3-Series won this one, but we do think it’s a lazy choice. It’s the default ‘best in category’, but it’s due to be changed and no longer has an edge. Although it is a very good car.

Executive: The Audi A6 takes this one, but we’d have put this between the BMW 5-Series and the Jaguar XF, especially now the XF has the 2.2 diesel to offer too.

Luxury Car: For some reason – great car though it is – the Mercedes S Class gets this. It’s old and about to be binned and the 7-Series, A8 and XJ all eclipse it. Did AE just dig out the list of default winners?.

Compact SUV: As it won the Best Car of the Year it would have been odd if the Range Rover Evoque didn’t win this. But it did. And maybe it should have had the Crossover as well.

Best Large SUV: The Land Rover Discovery gets the Best big SUV for the 201st year running. And we agree.

Best MPV: This is a win for Spain with the SEAT Alhambra. We still have a liking for the Peugeot 5008.

Hot Hatch: Golf GTI takes this one. On balance, probably the best ownership experience if not necessarily the most exciting.

Convertible: Again, we understand why the BMW 3-Series Convertible would win, but it’s an old model and we reckon even BMW would accept it’s no longer cutting edge.

Small Sports: The default winner is the Mazda MX-5 for this category. So the Mazda MX-5 won.

Green Award: Should have been the Blue Award as the ‘Gong for Green’ goes to VW BlueMotion.

Performance Car: Again, another default winner – the Ferrari 458 Italia – which will probably have Ron Dennis spitting feathers.

Design Award: The aptly named – under the circumstances – Saab Phoenix took the Design Award. Although whether Saab will be around long enough for any other Phoenix to rise we still don’t know.

Pioneering High-Tech: The Ford Focus got an award for all its high-tech stuff in a mainstream car. Why?

Best Brand: Skoda. A subjective award if ever we saw one.


We think we’ve covered every award, but there were so many we’re bound to have missed something.

It seems the plan was to have enough categories so every car in the known universe could win, and no one would be disappointed.

It must have come close.

By Cars UK