Toyota scoops prestigious ‘Brand of the Year’ gong for the second time since 2016 Pic:SUPPLIED
Toyota scoops prestigious ‘Brand of the Year’ gong for the second time since 2016 Pic:SUPPLIED

The 2018-19 Cars.co.za Consumer Awards, powered by WesBank, concluded with the announcement of 12 category winners and the awarding of the prestigious Brand of the Year title at a red carpet event hosted at Kyalami Raceway in Johannesburg on January 24.

The event was attended by 350 guests who included finance sector and automotive industry bigwigs, media and a variety of celebrities, some of whom, like Springbok Victor Matfield and DJ Fresh, played the role of category winner announcers.

Two-time brand of the year award winner Suzuki managed another win with the new Suzuki Swift taking the Budget Car category Pic: SUPPLIED
Two-time brand of the year award winner Suzuki managed another win with the new Suzuki Swift taking the Budget Car category Pic: SUPPLIED

The significance of these awards is the aim to unearth the best car buys in a calendar year. The panel of judges includes motoring journalists from various SA publications, celebrities and individuals who hold public influence in their respective roles.

They score the list of contenders during back-to-back testing that happens at the Gerotek vehicle testing facility on the outskirts of Pretoria. The cars are taken through their paces in an assortment of tests for analysis in disciplines such as emergency lane-changing stability, wet surface grip, braking power and cornering ability. The Lifestyle bakkie category is also tested for offroad driving prowess and trailer-pulling power.   

VW Amarok V6 TDI powers away from segment contenders and wins lifestyle bakkie wars. Pic: SUPPLIED
VW Amarok V6 TDI powers away from segment contenders and wins lifestyle bakkie wars. Pic: SUPPLIED

The CarsAwards incorporate the general public’s vote and experiences with brands through an ownership survey. This contributes 50% to the final tally of points awarded to a car by the panel of judges, with the most prestigious title awarded by #CarsAwards — Brand of the Year — based solely on the findings of the ownership satisfaction survey.

Hannes Oosthuizen, Cars.co.za’s consumer experience manager says: “From the start in 2015 it was our goal to build an awards programme that could be used as a buying guide and which would reach the entire population, not only those who follow motoring publications.

With 50% of a vehicle’s final score determined by a brand’s performance in the survey, a car only really stands a very good chance of winning if it is a good product in the eyes of the judges and if the brand delivers solid after-sales service, he says.

Segment altering new Mercedes-Benz A-Class marks its local arrival by winning the Premium Compact category
Segment altering new Mercedes-Benz A-Class marks its local arrival by winning the Premium Compact category

 

Category winners of the 2018-19 Cars.co.za Consumer Awards – powered by WesBank

Budget Car: Suzuki Swift 1.2 GL

Compact Hatch: Volkswagen Polo 1.0TSI Comfortline Auto

Premium Compact: Mercedes-Benz A200 AMG-Line

Compact Family Car: Nissan Qashqai 1.2 Acenta Auto

Family Car: Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace 1.4 TSI Trendline

Business Class: Volkswagen Arteon 2.0TSI 4Motion R-Line

Executive Sedan: Mercedes-Benz E220d Avantgarde

Leisure Double-Cab: Volkswagen Amarok 3.0 V6 TDI 4Motion Highline Plus

Adventure SUV: Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4x4 Auto

Executive SUV: Volvo XC60 D5 AWD R-Design

Premium SUV: Range Rover Velar D300 R-Dynamic SE

Hot Hatch: Honda Civic Type R

Performance Car: No trophy awarded