The results are in! After a nail-biting lead-up right till the end, where the top contenders – the Volvo XC60, Toyota Camry and BMW 5-Series – swapped places three times, the Volvo XC60 has emerged overall champion at the recently concluded Japan Car of the Year Awards, or JCOTY! Here’s the XC60 in action…
2017 – 2018 Japan Car of the Year Scoring Guide
First place – Volvo XC 60 (Volvo · Car · Japan Ltd.) 294 points
Second place – BMW 5 Series Sedan / Touring (BMW Co. Ltd.) 242 points
3rd place – Toyota Camry (Toyota Motor Corporation) 232 points
4th place – Suzuki Swift Series (Suzuki Corporation) 210 points
5th place – Honda N-BOX / N-BOX Custom (Honda Motor Co. Ltd.) 189 points
6th place – Lexus LC (Toyota Motor Corporation) 115 points
7th place – Alfa Romeo Giulia (FCA Japan Ltd.) 89 points
8th place – Mazda CX-5 (Mazda Co. Ltd.) 83 points
9th place – Citroen C 3 (Peugeot Citroen · Japon Co. Ltd.) 35 points
10th place – Volkswagen Tiguan (Volkswagen Group Japan Co. Ltd.) 11 points
“In a nail-biting vote-counting ceremony that saw the lead change three times between the Volvo XC60 (above), BMW 5-Series and Toyota Camry, the Swedish crossover pulled away in the closing moments to poll 294 votes and clinch the 2018 Japan Car of the Year. The XC60 finished some 52 votes clear of the strong finishing 5-Series and 62 ahead of the closest Japanese competitor, Toyota’s Camry.” (below) – NewsPress.
Accepting the trophy in front of 60 Car of the Year jurors and over 200 industry colleagues, Volvo Japan CEO Takayuki Kimura said, “This is the first time in Japan COTY’s 38-year history that Volvo has won an award. To be honest, I would have been happy with the Import Car of the Year*. But to come away with the overall Japan Car of the Year is totally unexpected and sincerely humbling. I dedicate this award to the 100 dealers and 1400 staff across the nation.”
The Suzuki Swift finished in 4th place, ahead of the Honda N-Box (above), Lexus LC, Alfa Romeo Giulia (below), Mazda CX-5, Citroen C3 and VW Tiguan. In the special award categories, Toyota picked up a hat-trick of trophies; one for Best Innovation for its Prius PHEV while the Lexus LC captured the Emotional Award.
Then, in this, its 20th anniversary since launching, the Prius hybrid, Toyota picked up the COTY steering committee’s ‘Special Achievement Award’ for the brand’s 10 millionth hybrid sale, a trophy Toyota executive chairman and first-gen Prius chief engineer Takeshi Uchiyamada was proud to receive.
The Honda N-Box won the Small Mobility Award for being judged the best vehicle in Japan’s unique 660cc class category.
In the second biggest surprise of the day (after the Volvo win), a second Special Achievement Award was presented to racer Takuma Sato (above) for his unforgettable victory in this year’s Indy 500, making him the first Japanese to win the legendary race.
For more information, please access: http://www.jcoty.org/
*If an imported car (like the Volvo XC60) wins Japan COTY, the Import COTY Award is shelved.
Images from JCOTY.org