It’s World Car of the Year Awards time again, and despite the industry being hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic around the world, some hugely impressive vehicles have gone on sale.
Here, we take a look at the winners in all five categories, as voted for by a panel of 93 journalists from 28 countries.
World Car of the Year – Volkswagen ID.4
It’s safe to say Volkswagen has done an impressive job of overturning the troubles that came with the Dieselgate scandal, having shifted its focus towards electric vehicles under the ID branding.
The first in the range was the ID.3 hatchback, followed by the ID.4 SUV. It’s the latter that has won the prestigious World Car of the Year title, having scored highly for its market significance, environmental impact and innovative features.
World Luxury Car – Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Over the years, the S-Class has led the way in the luxury market thanks to its stunning interiors, ultra-comfortable driving experience and innovative technology.
The latest model is no different, scoring particularly well for its safety features – no surprise given the fact that this car acts as Mercedes’ technology pioneer, boasting the latest and greatest driver assistance features and semi-autonomous driving abilities.
World Performance Car – Porsche 911 Turbo
Another that’s no surprise, the 911 Turbo has been voted the best performance car in 2021. This rear-engined Porsche sports car has long been the standard-bearer in the segment, and the latest model has ballistic performance and hugely impressive handling characteristics.
Unsurprisingly, judges rated it highly for performance, while its emotional appeal helped swing the balance in its favour. It’s available as both a coupe and cabriolet, with even the entry-level Turbo models capable of 199mph.
World Urban Car – Honda e
When Honda brought a funky, retro electric car to the 2017 Frankfurt motor show, the world fell in love with its cute, diminutive features. So much so, in fact, that Honda decided to actually make it. The result was the ‘e’, which kept most of the cool styling of the concept.
It has a pretty short electric range of up to 137 miles, but with its dinky dimensions it was only really designed to be used in the city. Its funky styling and futuristic interior won judges over, comfortably beating the excellent Toyota Yaris to the title of World Urban Car.
World Car Design of the Year – Land Rover Defender
Replacing the iconic Defender was always going to be a difficult task, but Land Rover absolutely nailed the design of the new model. It absolutely ran away with the voting, comprehensively beating the Honda e and Mazda MX-30.
It’s not all show, though. The new Defender is arguably the most capable production off-roader on the market, but what’s even more impressive is that its on-road manners are also fantastic, making it a brilliant all-rounder.