When the list of finalists was announced for the 2018 World Car of the Year (WCOTY), it was clearly a sign of the times as all three models were SUVs. These days, that’s the hottest category in the market and it’s been growing since the 1990s. Every carmaker must have at least one SUV to offer – even Rolls-Royce with its Cullinan that is to come. And this year would mean that it’s the second year a SUV has won the title as last year it was Jaguar’s F-PACE.
The three finalists were the Mazda CX-5, Range Rover Velar and Volvo XC60 and the judging panel made up of 82 international automotive journalists from 24 countries chose the Volvo. This would be the third major award for the model, following the 2017-2018 Japan Car of the Year and the 2018 North American SUV Car of the Year.
Jaguar Land Rover was hopeful that their Range Rover Velar would win but they can still be proud of the model winning the World Car Design title. Nissan’s latest, much improved LEAF EV was picked as the winner in the World Green Car category, while the latest BMW M5 was chosen for the World Performance Car category.
The World Luxury Car for 2018 is the latest generation of the Audi A8 which had made it to the top three finalists in the category along with the Porsche Cayenne and Panamera. Yet another German model – the Volkswagen Polo – was picked as the World Urban Car this year.
PREVIOUS WORLD CAR OF THE YEAR WINNERS
2017: Jaguar F-PACE | 2016: Mazda MX-5 | 2015: Mercedes-Benz C-Class
2014: Audi A3 | 2013: Volkswagen Golf Mark 7 | 2012: Volkswagen Up!
2011: Nissan LEAF | 2010: Volkswagen Polo
2009: Volkswagen Golf Mark 6 | 2008: Mazda2
2007: Lexus LS460 | 2006: BMW 3-Series | 2005: Audi A6