• Country: Luxembourg
  • Name: Gerhard Kuntschik, President of the Jury Country: Austria Capital: Vienna Population: 9,097,759 Auto Park: 240.000 new registrations (2021)
  • Name: Xavier Daffe Country: Belgium Capital: Bruxelles Population: 11,239,755 Auto Park: 5,9 millions
  • Name: Ilia Seliktar, Honorary President of the Jury and Co-Founder member of the board Country: Bulgaria Capital: Sofia Population: 6,856,602 Auto Park: 2.5 million, year import and registration of new cars - 35 000, second hand - 250 000. Name: Leonid Seliktar Country: Bulgaria Capital: Sofia Population: 6,856,602 Auto Park: 350,000 new vehicles.
  • Name: Ozren Adamović Country: Croatia Capital: Zagreb Population: 3,88 million Auto Park: 1,968,370
  • Name: Petros Soutzis, Co-founder & Vice President of the jury Country: Cyprus Capital: Nicosia Population: 1,141,166 Auto Park: 900,000
  • Name: Vladimir Rybecky Country: Czech Republic Capital: Prague Population: 10 515 669 Auto Park: 6 293 125 registered cars (average age 15,58), 610 405 registered light commercial vehicles, 186 905 registered trucks, 20 489 registered buses (end of the year 2021). Registrations in 2021: 206 876 new cars, 19 660 new LCVs, 8 679 new trucks, 1 367 buses. Car production in 2021: cars 1 105 223, trucks 1 262, buses 4 947.
  • Name: Mikkel Thomsager Country: Denmark Capital: Copenhagen Population: 5,700,000 Auto Park: 2,278,000
  • Name: Tommi Petteri Lempinen Country: Finland Capital: Helsinki Population: 5,300,000
  • Country: France
  • Name: Ioannis Stavropoulos Country: Greece Capital: Athens Population: 10,815,197 Auto Park: 5.200.000 cars, exclude taxi (is about 34.000) LCV and HCV
  • Name: Robert van Ginneken Country: Holland Capital: Amsterdam Population: 17,5 million Auto Park: 9 million of which 400.000 BEV and 145.000 PHEV
  • Name: Gábor Szécsényi Country: Hungary Capital: Budapesta Population: 9,617,512 Auto Park: 4,000,000
  • Name: Achim Stahn Country: Germany Capital: Berlin Population: 83,000,000 Auto Park: 47,700,000
  • Name: Dave Humphreys Country: Ireland Capital: Dublin Population: 6,378,000 Auto Park: 2,515,322
  • Name: Alessio Viola Country: Italy Capital: Rome Population: 60,795,612 Auto Park: 36,900,000
  • Name: Krumislav Barzov Country: Macedonia Capital: Skopje Population: 2,058,539 Auto Park: 400,000
  • Name: Anthony Alfred Darmanin Country: Malta Capital: Valletta Population: 425,000 Auto Park: 410,000 Registered vehicles, approx. 10,000 new vehicles registered each year
  • Name: David Andersen Country: Norway Capital: Oslo Population: 5,136,700 Auto Park: 3 milion
  • Name: Szczepan Mroczek Country: Poland Capital: Warsaw Population: 37,773,915 Auto Park: 25,000,000
  • Name: José Caetano Country: Portugal Capital: Lisbon Population: 10,347,892 Auto Park: 4,480,000
  • Name: Dan Vardie, Founder & Chairman Country: Romania Capital: Bucharest Population: 19,237,691 Auto Park: 8,9 millions
  • Name: Suspended – Petr Menshikh Country: Russia Capital: Moscow Population: 143,975,923
  • Name: Mladen Alvirović Country: Serbia Capital: Belgrad Population: 7,209,764 Auto Park: 2,200,000
  • Name: Rudolf Karpat, Co-founder Country: Slovakia Capital: Bratislava Population: 5,415,949 Auto Park: 2,725,538 Name: Michal Karpat Country: Slovakia Capital: Bratislava Population: 5,5 milion Auto Park: 3,436.018 cars and LCV registered , 2021 sales: 75.700 cars and LCV
  • Name: Matjaz Korošak Country: Slovenia Capital: Ljublijana Population: 2,061,085 Auto Park: 1,100,000
  • Name: Joan Dalmau Country: Spain Capital: Madrid Population: 46,786,605 Auto Park: 29.9 million vehicles
  • Name: Felix Björklund Country: Sweden Capital: Stockholm Population: 10,23 million Auto Park: 4,887,904
  • Name: Markus Rutishauser Country: Switzerland Capital: Bern Population: 8,306,200 Auto Park: 4,503,339
  • Name: Okan Altan Country: Turkey Capital: Ankara Population: 85 million Auto Park: 25,385,084 (End of 2022, February)
  • Name: Richard Aucock Country: United Kingdom Capital: London Population: 64,511,000 Auto Park: 37,000,000
  • Name: Oleg Vasylevskyi Country: Ukraine Capital: Kiev Population: 42,031,000 Auto Park: 10,950,000 cars and commercial vehicles

AUTOBEST 2018 Gala in Salzburg – Press Release12 / 02 / 2018

The AUTOBEST organisation celebrated the 17th edition of Awards Gala

  • Dr Wolfgang Porsche becomes the first member of the AUTOBEST Hall of Fame


The 17th edition of the AUTOBEST Gala Awards took place last week in Salzburg, Austria, in the Karl Böhm Saal Festspielhaus, a landmark of the city, built by Prince Archbishop Guidobald Count of Thun in 1662 as a so-called winter riding school. Its present form was designed in 1926 by Clemens Holzmeister.

The Gala in Salzburg had an original scenario, having Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart `beamed up` from his time to the 21st century in a to co-present with the racing driver, broadcaster and motoring journalist, Amanda Stretton as the Gala MC. Light-painting artists introduced every award, making it a remarkable show, unique in the car industry.


The Citroën C3 Aircross was voted “AUTOBEST 2018”, becoming the second Citroën model in the AUTOBEST history to win, after the victory of the first-generation C3 in 2003. Linda Jackson, CEO of Citroën expressed her pleasure in accepting the prestigious award. “On behalf of all my team, I am very proud and honoured to see the new C3 Aircross win this election as the ‘Best Buy Car of Europe in 2018. This award recognises all of the work done since 2014 on the complete renewal of the Citroën brand. It is a great recognition of the qualities of the C3 Aircross, as it fully corresponds to the idea of the ‘Best Buy Car’ which we share with AUTOBEST.”


Ilia Seliktar, President of the Jury, AUTOBEST Co-Founder said It is my pleasure to congratulate Linda Jackson and her management team for winning AUTOBEST 2018 award! In front of tough competition, the Citroën C3 Aircross proved to be a champion, convincing the Jury members that is the right choice for this year’s award. It is also a new victory for an SUV, proving once again the Jury ability not only to follow the market developments but also to detect the trends by giving the European customers a real guide in buying the cars fit for tomorrow! C3 Aircross is the right answer for tomorrow!”.”


The biggest news of the Gala was the inauguration of the AUTOBEST Hall of Fame. “This is the globally unique gallery dedicated to the icons of the automotive world, personalities who dedicated their entire life to develop the automobile further and make it better in the service of the people. It is the Hall of Fame for remarkable people who have left their mark on our history. Becoming a member of AUTOBEST Hall of Fame follows the decision of the largest independent motoring media jury in Europe, with no less than 31 countries represented,” said Dan Vardie, AUTOBEST Founder & Chairman.


Dr Wolfgang Porsche is the first person to be inducted to the AUTOBEST Hall of Fame. “I am proud and happy to be honoured for my life’s work. Becoming a member of this global –  unique – gallery, dedicated to the icons of the automotive world, is a great honour. And a really good feeling. Thank you, dear voting committee, for choosing me,” stated, Dr Porsche in a unique, emotional speech.


The “MANBEST 2017” winner was Geely Holding Group Chairman, Li Schufu, who sent a very rare public video statement. In it, he said: “I am honoured to receive the MANBEST award from AUTOBEST. Thank you for your care and support of Geely Holding Group. Europe is the birthplace of the industrial revolution and has deep roots in the manufacturing industry. For the global development of brands under Geely Holding Group, Europe plays a very important part. Building up and maintaining a good brand image in the European market has always been a goal for us. Thank you AUTOBEST for this award. I wish you all the happiness and success.” You can view this message in full at www.autobest.org.


Present at Salzburg to collect the award was Frank Klaas, Head of Communications Geely International. In accepting the award on behalf of Chairman Li, he added: “Our Chairman is honoured by your award. We appreciate the cooperation with AUTOBEST, the largest motoring media Jury of Europe. I look at the evolution of AUTOBEST, and I congratulate you for this unique journey.” Frank Klaas is a veteran of the automotive industry and was one of the first top executives AUTOBEST cooperated with in organising a Gala more than a decade ago.


The “SMARTBEST 2017” award went to SEAT for implementing ALEXA in its cars. “We dreamed of winning the AUTOBEST award again with Ibiza. But we also said that if that will be not the case, we desired to win SMARTBEST for ALEXA. This award perfectly captures the focus of  SEAT as the best-connected brand in the industry. I thank the AUTOBEST Jury members for voting for us,” said Christian Stein, the Global Communications Director of SEAT in accepting the award.

The “COMPANYBEST” 2017 award went to Jaguar Land Rover. “This award belongs to all the people working in our company. On their behalf, I am honoured to accept COMPANYBEST prize,” stated Prof Dr Ralf Speth, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover. He also added “AUTOBEST has a membership of 31 European countries and as Dan Vardie said, you are addressing a number of more than 650 million people on our continent. This is an incredible achievement; you must be very proud of it. At JLR, with about 600,000 units produced annually, we can only dream to address to such a big number of customers.”

The “ECOBEST 2017” award went jointly to PSA, Bureau Veritas, Transport & Environment and France Nature Environment for the “Real-world Fuel Consumption Protocol”. It is the first time that a car maker has published consumption figures that take real-life driving into account. In a video message, Gilles Le Borgne, Executive Vice-president of PSA, said: `On behalf of the participants of this project, I want to thank the AUTOBEST Jury for this prestigious award. It honours a unique initiative taken two years ago. Today we can provide more than 1,000 real values of consumption of our vehicles. More than 600,000 customers or possible customers have connected to our brands’ internet sites to check these values. We will enlarge the protocol for measuring the pollutants. At the Geneva Motor Show, we will reveal the first results of measuring these pollutants.”

Philippe Lanternier, Vice President of Bureau Veritas, present at the Gala, accepted the award. “We at Bureau Veritas, highly appreciate this award, and we look forward to expanding our cooperation with AUTOBEST,” said Lanternier referring to the ECOBEST Challenge project launched more than four years ago by AUTOBEST. It aims to measure the real-life & real traffic consumption, CO2, microparticles and pollutants of the cars sold in Europe.


“DESIGNBEST 2017” went to the remarkable designer Marek Reichman, Chief Designer & Creative Officer at Aston Martin. “I am extremely proud to become a member of the prestigious DESIGNBEST Hall of Fame, which I would like to dedicate to my design team based in our Design Studio at our Gaydon Headquarters in the UK,” said Reichman.

“SAFETYBEST 2017” has been awarded to TOYOTA for its Toyota Safety Sense. Thierry Boitel, Director of Electronics, Toyota Motor Europe Technical Centre in Brussels, said on stage: “I would like to thank the Jury of AUTOBEST for the attribution of the “SAFETYBEST” award to Toyota very much. Toyota Safety Sense has been rolled-out on a wide scale covering today 92% of our line-up in Europe. The Toyota Safety Sense contributes to better safety through its technology.”

“SPORTBEST 2017” award went to Friedrich Enzinger, Porsche Motorsport LMP Team Vice President LMP. In accepting the award on stage, Mr Enzinger said: `On behalf of Porsche Motorsport I am honoured to accept this prestigious award.” Mr Enzinger helped to guide the team to achieve incredible results in a very short time, putting Porsche in the leading position in motorsport. On this basis, Volkswagen Group has promoted Mr Enzinger to oversee all motorsport activities within the Group.

AUTOBEST is also introducing Dusan Lukic as the new member representing Slovenia. Dusan said: “I am happy to be a member of the Jury, I embrace the mission, vision and rules of Autobest and I will do my best to have a contribution to the Jury development.” The AUTOBEST organisation thanks Vinko Kernc, the predecessor of Dusan, for his activities in the Jury.






The AUTOBEST organisation was established in 2001 with the revolutionary concept of “best buy car” available on the European market. A total of 31 European nations is now represented in the Jury, covering the vast majority of the European population. For a car to become an AUTOBEST winner, it must represent the best offering for most European customers. Price, service network, spare parts distribution and versatility are the most important criteria in the voting process. Design and new technologies are becoming important criteria for voting. AUTOBEST uses a transparent voting system, with a complex matrix of 13 criteria to decide the winner.




Larisa Gîrbacea



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