The Peugeot 2008 sports-utility vehicle (SUV) has been named the 2021 Car of the Year (COTY) by the South African Guild of Mobility Journalists (SAGMJ).
The Toyota Hilux double-cab bakkie came in second, while the BMW 4 Series took the bronze medal.
The various category winners are as follows:
• Budget category: Toyota Starlet
• Compact category: Hyundai Venue
• Compact family category: Peugeot 2008 SUV
• Family category: Audi A4•
Premium category: BMW 4 Series
• Adventure category: Toyota Land Cruiser Prado•
Double-cab category: Toyota Hilux double- cab
• Performance category: Porsche 911 Turbo S
• New-energy category: Porsche Taycan
• Motor enthusiasts’ choice (as selected by the public): Mercedes-Benz E-Class•
Jurors’ excellence award (raw scores only): Peugeot 2008 SUV
The South African COTY trophy has been awarded since 1986.
The 2021 competition presented a set of unique challenges, owing to Covid-19, says the SAGMJ.
“For the first time in the competition’s history, we did not host our scheduled two-day juror evaluation event.
Thankfully, we had the foresight to create an ongoing online scoring system, available to all SAGMJ members, based on scoring criteria that closely mirrored COTY’s voting criteria,” explains the guild.
“The scoring system was initially created to build up a database of vehicles tested – their strengths, weaknesses – to be able to compare them to other category contenders.
“Our expert COTY jurors had access to this scoring system and were encouraged to score vehicles as they experienced them on launches or as test-drive vehicles, and to input their scores and notes [through] the SAGMJ scoring system.”
Two additional awards that the SAGMJ instituted at its annual general meeting held earlier this year are the most admired vehicle manufacturer, which was presented to Stellantis for 2021, and the lifetime public relations achiever’s award, presented to Lindsay Pieterse of BMW.