With the South African Car of the Year announcement coming in March of 2017, the team here at Auto Mart wanted to take the opportunity to highlight the 10 cars that made it to the finals this year. With everything from Volkswagen and Toyota, to Honda and Hyundai, it is easy to see that we have a great amount of stunning cars for sale in South Africa to choose from.
How the Car of the Year (COTY) is judged and chosen
Put through stringent tests and evaluations by the South African Guild of Motoring Journalists (SAGMJ), the South African Car of the Year finalists will be put to the test in February of 2017 at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit. The jury, which will independently assess each finalist using modules and structured testing systems and procedures, will score every finalist against its class competitors.
Some of the things judges look at when scoring the finalists include the technology in the cars, its affordability and value for money, the car’s interior styling, layout and ergonomics, the engine, the car’s ride quality and transmission.
Also taken into consideration during testing and scoring by judges are the car’s steering and handling, its overall excellence, exterior design and build quality and engineering.
How the 10 finalists were chosen
The finalist were revealed in September of 2016 after the 28 member jury, which was elected by their peers, casted a vote. From the 35 eligible vehicles, these 10 finalists were chosen.
Cars launched between the period of August 2015 and August 2016 were eligible for nomination, with all the members of the South African Guild of Motoring Journalists (SAGMJ) being able to vote for 10 cars that could be selected for the semi-finals.
From here, the elected jury selected 20 cars and, from this list, members voted for their top 10. The top 20 cars receiving the most votes made it to the semi-finals. After this, the list was trimmed down to result in the top 10 finalists listed below.
Finalists of the South African Car of the Year awards
Before we get started on the 10 finalists, please note that the list of the 10 finalists are in no particular order.
The Hyundai Tucson
Making a splash in 2016, the Hyundai Tucson is a beauty of an SUV boasting significant exterior design upgrades compared to its predecessor. With a fluid design and everything from LED daytime running lights and a panoramic sunroof option, to a comprehensive airbag system, ABS and Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) with Electronic Stability Control (ESC), this Hyundai SUV has everything you could want in a car.
With a starting price of R 369 900, you can choose from both petrol or diesel options, as well as automatic and manual transmissions.
If you would like to learn more about this offer from Hyundai, be sure to read our “Meet the revolutionary new Hyundai Tucson” and “Turbodiesel engines for the Hyundai Tucson” posts on the Auto Mart Blog.
Mazda CX 3
A small, compact SUV from Mazda, the CX 3 is a city friendly size and offers a sunroof, halogen (or optional LED) headlamps and an exterior design that is flowing, smooth and fun. Modern and connected, the interior of the Mazda CX 3 is equipped with great tech and offers space, a 60/40 rear seat split and Bluetooth, hands-free audio and phone capabilities.
With everything from Hill Launch Assist, ABS, SRS airbags and audio inputs that are compatible with even your iPod, these Mazda SUVs are great creatures designed for both city living and the adventurous at heart.
The CX3 has a starting price of R 284 800 and offers six petrol powertrain options to choose from. Discover more about these stunning SUVs from Mazda by reading our “Explore what’s beyond in the all new Mazda CX 3” post on the Blog.
Another Car of the Year finalist in South Africa, the Audi A4 is an intelligent sedan featuring the Audi Virtual Cockpit which include a 12.3 inch LCD screen, a driver assistance system and beautiful exterior lines. With tons of optional extras (like the Bang & Olufsen 3D sound system) and 11 engine options, choice is definitely not limited with these models from Audi.
The A4 has a starting price of R 479 300, a combination of leather and artificial leather interior, 16 inch cast aluminium alloy wheel, a three spoke steering wheel design that features gear selector lever knobs, and daytime running lights to name but a few standard features.
You can discover more about this amazing sedan by reading the “Audi A4: Elegant, athletic, powerful” post on the Auto Mart Blog.
The Honda Civic
Athletic and boasting a dynamic design, the Honda Civic Sedan is available in four different model options and offers safety in the form of front, curtain and side SRS airbags, ABS, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Vehicle Stability Assist and Hill Start Assist, to name but a few features.
Having a starting price of R 330 000, the Civic Sedan has a five inch Display Audio system that offers everything from AM/FM radio to Bluetooth HFT and USB connectivity. Other interior offerings you can expect in this Honda include an electric parking brake, ergonomic seat designs and automatic air conditioning.
If you would like to learn more about what makes the Civic sedan a Car of the Year finalist, you can learn more about its features by reading “Drive a bigger, bolder and better Honda Civic”.
Jaguar F Pace
A performance SUV, the Jaguar F Pace is a beauty, especially if you are a fan of the brand. Sporty with a touch of drama, the F Pace is proud of its sports car DNA. Inspired by the Jaguar F-Type, the F-Pace features a lightweight aluminium architecture and comes equipped with Electronic Power Assisted Steering (EPAS), an AWD system and range of efficient diesel and petrol engines.
With four engine options and models to choose from, the F Pace has a starting price of R 776 800. You can also opt for the F Pace First Addition offering two models and a starting price of R 1 218 100.
Discover more about what makes the Jaguar F Pace such a stunning SUV option in South Africa by reading “The Super Sexy Jaguar F-Pace” post on the Auto Mart Blog.
A stunning car making the finals, the Opel Astra boasts an athletic look with sharp lines and beautiful curves. With LED daytime running lights, the Astra is equipped with the newest generation engines from Opel, link suspension and the R300BT radio system that includes Bluetooth functionality, USB connectivity and audio streaming standard.
EcoFlex helps to reduce your fuel consumption while ecoFlex Drive Assist aids you in driving in the most efficient way. With the optional Opel Eye camera system you can benefit from features such as lane departure warning, a forward collision alert, lane keep assist and even traffic sign assist.
With tons of awesome extras such as Park Assist, Keyless Access and Intellilux LED, you can create an Opel Astra that compliments your style and sporty ambitions. The Astra offers four model options and has a starting price of R 259 100.
Already know which Car of the Year finalist you want to buy? Find a wide selection of stunning cars for sale on Auto Mart today!
Sleek and sporty, the Renault Kadjar is an adventurous SUV that should definitely not be overlooked. Featuring cool tech in the form of a ‘digital dashboard’ and multimedia system, the Kadjar boasts a blind spot detector, park assist with a self-parking system equipped with park distance control.
The Kadjar also offers a range of passive and active safety features such as ABS, Emergency Brake Assist (EBA), Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD).
Available with a range of accessories, the Kadjar is available in petrol or diesel, and has five model options to choose from. You can expect a starting price of R 364 900. Like to learn more about what makes this Renault SUV tick? Check out our “Dare to live in the new Renault Kadjar” post.
The Car of the Year list will not be complete without a Toyota, the newest Fortuner standing out from the latest releases from the brand. With a striking new exterior design, the Fortuner embodies luxury, toughness and off-road capability.
With a total of eight model options to choose from, this Toyota SUV is equipped with everything from ABS ad Trailer Sway Control (TSC), to leather seats, one touch electronic windows and an alarm, ultrasonic sensors and immobiliser.
If you are interested in the Toyota Fortuner, it has a starting price of R 438 000. Not yet convinced? Learn more about what puts this SUV on the list of finalists by reading our “Toyota Fortuner: Bold and powerful with a rugged design” post.
The Volkswagen Tiguan
The first of two Volkswagen cars to make the 10 finalist’s list, the Volkswagen Tiguan is a great family car that boast masculine SUV styling elements and up to 615 litres of luggage space. Offering cool tech and optional driver assistance systems, the Tiguan is equipped with high bean headlights, ergoActive seats and the latest generation of engines.
With a starting price of R 379 900, the entry level Volkswagen Tiguan Trendline comes with , among many other features, ABS, an Electronic Stability Programme (ESP), 17 inch alloy wheels, a climactic air conditioner, cruise control fatigue detection in the form of ‘Rest Assist’ and a five inch Touchscreen Radio and CD system with SD Card and MP3 compatibility.
Discover more about the latest Tiguan by checking out our “No challenge is too big for the new VW Tiguan 2016” post on the blog.
The second Volkswagen making the finals, the Passat has a starting price of around R 433 000 and offers drivers everything from Stop/Start technology to Drive Profile Select, enabling you to switch between normal, eco, individual and sport.
In its eighth generation, the Volkswagen Passat has a touchscreen infotainment system, ambient lighting and comfortable seats combined with great legroom. In terms of safety you can expect features such as LED headlights, skid prevention and multi-collision braking.
In terms of tech, you can look forward to Park Assist, an active information display and adaptive cruise control.
There you have it. The 10 finalists of the 2017 South African Car of the Year. Is your favourite on the list? Tell us who you think should take home first place, in the comment section below.
Ready to find some of the best cars in South Africa? Browse through the cars for sale on Auto Mart and find your car of the year today!