Fiat Linea is the “AUTOBEST 2008”
SKODA Auto elected “COMPANYBEST 2007”
(December 07-th, 2007)
Fiat Linea was voted “AUTOBEST 2008”. With a total of 850 points, the winner overtook Kia Cee’d with 66 points, and Mazda 2, came third with a total of 704 points. 8 members of the Jury selected Linea as the winner, and other 4 gave the first place to KIA c’eed. Mazda 2 managed to obtain two no 1 position. With just one no 1 position among the Jury members, Skoda Fabia came on 4-th position with 679 points and Toyota Auris on 5-th, collecting 583 points. (for detailed results, see Final Ranking attachment).
A fair assessment between winners cannot be done just comparing the points. Three years ago, only 12 members been in AUTOBEST Jury. For this edition, there are15 motoring journalists. Therefore, this year we introduce a new index for a fair comparison: average percentage of points granted by the Jury members for a car out of the total no of points. In 2006, KIA Rio, managed to take an average of 24,5 % out of the total available no of points. Last year was the biggest index, Opel Corsa won with 25% points out of the maximum points. Fiat Linea won with 23,5 %.
“It was a very tough competition, with strong competitors. The new Fiat Linea proved to be an overall winner with an excellent value for money, a very good car for the needs of regular customers. KIA cee’d was a fantastic contender close to the winner and shortly followed by Mazda 2. All these three models are simply great cars, with strong sales. However, we can only have one winner. The new Linea is representing the best buy car for many countries around the world, not only the 15 countries represented by the Jury members.” Mr. Dan Vardie, AUTOBEST Chairman, stated.
Skoda Auto was voted “COMPANYBEST 2007” for the outstanding results announced by the company in the last years. The sales figures of Skoda worldwide and the amazing plans for manufacturing in other regions of the world are serious arguments for the Jury to grant such an important award. “We are very proud of Skoda. For a company with roots in our region, becoming so successful in so many markets, represents a huge success. Only few years ago, almost nobody was able to imagine where Skoda will go. And the story is still at the beginning!” Dan Vardie said.
AUTOBEST Jury decided that Christopher John Lacey – (Chris), the Executive Director, Central & Eastern Europe, General Motors Europe, to be elected as “MANBEST 2007”. His role in the Central & Eastern European success of GM brands is decisive. Chris is the best example of a self made man, coming from scratch to an international success story. He was one of the very first executives trusting the emerging markets region of Europe as the future of growth for the European auto industry. “Today we thank Chris for his stubborn English believe in East. Because of him we have a better car business today.” Dan Vardie added.
This year “DESIGNBEST 2007” is going to Patrick Le Quement, Chief Designer of Renault. Patrick is one the best designers we have nowadays in the car industry. He managed to create Renault design language but also to coordinate Logan design, a car that finally turned in a global success. As he sometimes declares, Patrick abandoned the “esperanto” style in order to give a real identity to the brands of Renault Group.
Autobest Jury voted Milos Pavlovic, the young Serbian motorsport talent to become “SPORTBEST 2007”. After Kubica, last year winner, Milos is another proof of talent coming from our region. He managed in World Series of Renault Championship to finish on the podium. For the next season Milos is committed to go for a better performance.
For AUTOBEST car winner, Jury made its decision taking into consideration 13 criteria, each of them counting a specific number of points that reflect a different importance in the final vote of each car. The price, with 60 points out of a total of 240 available to be distributed among the finalists, is the most important. Other sensitive issues for the region, like distribution network, service and spare parts availability, consumption, versatility and boot capacity, count for 20 points each. All of these specific criteria for the customers in emerging countries totalize more than a half of the total number of points. Other issues, common for all European countries, like new technologies, handling, dynamics, environmental friendly, are less important. The design, evaluated with 30 points maximum, becomes more and more important for the clients in emerging countries.
The seventh edition of AUTOBEST AWARDS FESTIVITY will take place at the beginning of February 2007 in Istanbul, Turkey. Following the tradition, AUTOBEST International Jury grants the awards in different country every year. Last year, the awards festivity was held in Budapest, Hungary. Besides the AUTOBEST winners, in Turkey are also invited important people and decision makers from the automotive industry in Turkey and Europe as well, politicians, stars, sports people and famous personalities.
AUTOBEST Jury thanks the readers from the region for encouraging the project and the PR responsible in the automotive industry for providing all the support in organizing meetings and drive tests of the new products.