The autojunction.in Automotive Awards seek to recognise the best new car launches in a given calendar year. These awards are not retrospective in nature but in fact are given based on feedback from those who finally matter - the consumers themselves. The Process is simple: all the new car launches between January 1, 2011 and December 31, 2011 qualify for the jury process. Only new model launches qualify, variants and derivatives and / or face-lifts or re-launches are not eligible to participate. The various launches are grouped in segments, and the segment winners then qualify for the coveted Car Of The Year award. The final winners are chosen purely on a ballot process, making the autojunction.in Automotive Awards truly democratic in nature. The voting for the 2011 autojunction.in Car Of The Year took place in the last fortnight of December, and the voters included people from all over the country, from big cities and small towns alike. Read on to find out who the big winners finally are!
SMALL CAR: This category award winner is the exciting new Hyundai Eon. Being the only new launch in this segment, the Eon is nevertheless a significant new car model not just for Hyundai, but for the Indian passenger car market as a whole. The autojunction.in Small Car of The Year Award goes to the Hyundai Eon!
HATCHBACK CAR: There were three new launches this year: the new Maruti Swift, the all-new Honda Brio and the all-new Toyota Etios Liva. The new Swift and the Liva are both available with a choice of petrol and diesel engines, while the Brio remains a petrol-only model. However, the new Swift completely trounced the competition, garnering more than three times the number of votes than the second-placed challenger, which was the Honda Brio. The Toyota Etios Liva trailed in third. The autojunction.in Hatchback Car of The Year is the new Maruti Swift!
MID-SIZE SEDAN: 2011 could well be called the Year of the Sedan, with a high number of launches across all segments. The mid-size sedan market is getting truly more and more competitive, and there were four new launches this year, including the Hyundai Verna, Ford Fiesta, Nissan Sunny and Skoda Rapid. Of these four, it was the Hyundai Verna which most captured the public's imagination, with its combination of style, features and wide choice of variants. The Ford Fiesta and Nissan Sunny fought a close battle for second, with the Fiesta pipping the Sunny to the post. The autojunction.in Mid Size Sedan for 2011 is the all-new Hyundai Verna!
EXECUTIVE SEDAN: Renault kicked off its Indian campaign with the Renault Fluence saloon, aimed at the Executive segment of the Indian sedan car market. Also in the fray this year is the all-new Jetta, which has grown in size and price and now knocks on the door of the next-higher segment of the Premium sedans. However, the Jetta's high price did not prove to be a deterrent for our voters, helping the Volkswagen Jetta to secure the 2011 autojunction.in Executive Sedan Of The Year Award!
PREMIUM CAR: The newly-launched Volkswagen Passat easily secured the title as it was the only Premium sedan launched this year. Buyers love its roomy cabin, fine styling and build quality and sure-footed driving experience, as do we. The addition of a petrol variant would round-off the range perfectly. Nevertheless, the new Volkswagen Passat is autojunction.in's Premium Car Of The Year for 2011!
SUV: Indian buyers surely have a taste for big vehicles, and the battle for the SUV of the year was hotly contested. There were three new SUVs to choose from, including the Renault Koleos, new BMW X1 and the Mahindra XUV 5OO. Autojunction.in's panel of nation-wide voters had the final say, and in the end it came down to a neck-and-neck battle between the X1 and the XUV 5OO, with the potential outcome changing by the hour. However, in the final analysis, it was the excellent new XUV 5OO which won out. The all-new Mahindra XUV 5OO is autojunction.in's SUV Of The Year!
PERFORMANCE CAR: India is a growing economy, and a major market today for luxury and sports car makers. 2011 has seen more launches in these two segments than the rest of the market put together. The numbers may be small, but the bragging rights are huge. This years high-octane gladiators include the Audi RS5, Lamborghini Aventador, Koenigsegg Agera, Ferrari FF and the Maserati Gran Coupe. This hotly-contested category was won by the Audi RS5, but only just, pipping the Lamborghini by just 2 votes! autojunction.in's Performance Car Of The Year is the Audi RS5!
LUXURY CAR: The dynamism is this segment is truly heartening for the enthusiast. Manufacturers today are striving to put their best foot forward in the indian car market, which is both lucrative yet demanding. Indian car buyers, however wealthy, can prove to be very demanding and value conscious. Among the various contenders from the luxury brands such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Jaguar, Maserati and Rolls Royce, the voting in this segment would surely prove to be an indicator of the sentiment in the market. Interestingly, the more expensive cars garnered far more votes, showing that when it comes to splashing out on luxury, Indian car buyers aren't loathe to flaunt their wealth. autojunction.in's Luxury Car of The Year is the new Rolls Royce Ghost!
LUXURY SUV: Another hotly-contested segment, Luxury SUVs today truly are a status symbol among the elite. The bigger the better, in fact. This year, we've seen two launches, which include the new BMW X3 and the Range Rover Evoque. This proved to be another segment where we couldn't be certain which way the ballot would swing. Finally, after all the voting was complete, in the final amalysis the Range Rover Evoque proved to be triumphant. The Luxury SUV of the Year Award goes to the sexy new Range Rover Evoque!
CRITICS CHOICE AWARD: There are some awards which may not be purely on a ballot basis, but where thought has been applied by a panel of experts, evaluating the new car launches from numerous perspectives. This year was fraught with so many choices, but after much deliberation, autojunction.in's exclusive jury panel has ruled that the new Nissan Sunny deserves this accolade, for its combination of space, safety features, comfort, fuel efficiency and value for money. The autojunction.in Critics Choice Award goes to the Nissan Sunny!
MANUFACTURER OF THE YEAR: Perceptions in the car market often influence buyers' decisions, and we were keen to get a sense of whom the Indian car buyer seeks to invest in. The contendors included Hyundai, for its newly launched Verna and Eon, both cars which have truly taken the Indian market by storm. The massively exciting new XUV 5OO earned Mahindra a berth as a contendor, and finally we included Renault and Nissan, both new companies, but with exciting new products in the Indian passenger car market. In the end, it was Hyundai which proved victorious among our nation-wide voters. Congratulations to Hyundai for being autojunction.in's Car Manufacturer Of The Year!
MOST EXCITING NEW CAR FOR 2012: With every new year, car buyers look forward to new car launches. If you thought 2011 was exciting, then 2012 promises to be an absolutely mental year! We asked our readers which car they were most looking forward to, among 15 models which we knew are confirmed for the coming year. Once again, the results proved to be truly insightful. The new BMW 3 Series has proved to be the car Indian buyers are most looking forward to in the coming year. The Maruti Ertiga and the Audi Q3 were a joint second. The new Honda Civic also proved popular with voters, but the small cars, like the Renault Pulse and Volkswagen Up didn't garner much excitement. autojunction.in's Most Exciting New Car for 2012 is the new BMW 3 Series!
CAR OF THE YEAR: There can be only one winner. Only one vehicle qualifies for the coveted Car Of The Year tag. The contendors include the various segment challengers, incuding Small Car, Hatchback, Mid-Size Sedan, Premium Sedan, Executive Sedan and SUV new launches. We did not include the Luxury Sedans, Luxury SUVs and Performance Car categories for the simple reason that their sales numbers are very low for them to be truly reflective of the needs of the larger segments of the Indian passenger car market. We threw the ballot open to our voters, and were truly blown away by the result when we counted the votes. Of course, the usual suspects, especially the hatchback and Mid-size sedans would surely garner more votes. In fact, the new Maruti Swift and the new Fluidic Hyundai Verna ran neck and neck for much of the voting...for second place! Hold your breath, for autojunction.in's winner of the coveted Car Of The Year is none other than the Mahindra XUV 5OO!
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