The automotive industry love to distribute Awards. From the prestigious car of the year to the best door knob manufacturer. We will keep you informed on the most interesting ones.

Lexus is celebrating double success in the 2008 Fleet World Honours, winning the Security Award and, for the second year running, the Best Luxury Car title for the LS.
The Security Award reflects Lexus’s attention to detail in providing the highest levels of protection against theft of or from its vehicles, a commitment that is also recognised by high ratings from Thatcham, the UK insurance industry’s research body.

George Emmerson, chairman of the judging panel, said Lexus “does more than anyone else in the market” in terms of effective anti-theft provisions.

Retaining its Best Luxury Car title confirms the Lexus LS’s status as a flagship limousine that delivers exceptional comfort, refinement and technical brilliance, not least in the seamless performance of the hybrid power LS 600h .

Once again Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, has been successful in the International Engine of the Year Awards. With its 911 Turbo-Drive, the sports car manufacturer has underpinned its position in a field of high performance competitors, receiving the coveted “Best Performance Engine Award” for the first time. For ten years now, this prize has been awarded by the British specialist journal “Engine Technology International” for outstanding engine characteristics.

In 2007 Porsche was already successful in the three to four liter category. This year the 3.6 Liter 480 PS Boxer engine (530 PS in the GT2 version) even gained first place in the free capacity class, putting strong competitors like BMW, Ferrari, Nissan and Audi in the shade.

For the first time the 911 Turbo power unit features an exhaust gas turbocharger with variable turbine geometry (VTG) for efficient control of the exhaust gas flow throughout the entire range of engine speeds, guiding the flow of air in exactly the right direction and at the right angle to the turbine blades. This leads to a discernible improvement in flexibility and acceleration, particularly at low speeds.

In the Engine of the Year Awards, 65 renowned motoring journalists from more than 30 countries judge power engines in various different categories. As well as performance, fuel consumption, driving behavior and driving comfort, the use of future-oriented technologies is also taken into account.

This year the BMW Group Design team took up the time-honoured tradition of designing cars exclusively for the Concorso d’Eleganza and unveiled its BMW M1 BMW M1 Homage. This design study, inspired by the BMW M1 and BMW Turbo, embraces tradition and modernism to give an insight into BMW’s own vision of a historically inspired automotive future.

Concorso d'Eleganza winners

Voted "Best of Show" by the Jury to take the Trofeo BMW Group was the Ferrari 166 MM Berlinetta Touring from the year 1949. Count Giannino Marzotto had acquired the Ferrari 166 Ferrari 166 MM from Enzo Ferrari, which was then given an aerodynamic coupé body by Touring based on their trademark superleggera, or lightweight, construction method.

Concorso d'Eleganza winners

This model was exhibited at the 1950 Geneva Motor Show. The Ferrari was then equipped with a new V12 Colombo Type 195 engine and went on to win the 1950 Mille Miglia. In the late 1950s the Ferrari Ferrari was deployed in small-scale racing events in the USA before being sold with its original 1949 engine to an American collector in 1965, who kept it until 2001. Its present owner, John Croul, acquired the car in 2003 and had it completely restored to its original condition.

The all-new 2009 Subaru Forester has earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s, "2008 Top Safety Pick" award. To win this award, a vehicle must offer superior overall crash protection among the vehicles in their class. To qualify, a vehicle must earn the highest rating of good in the Institute’s front, side, and rear tests and be equipped with electronic stability control.

"We are delighted that once again, a Subaru vehicle is recognized as a "Top Safety Pick", said Tom Doll, executive vice president and CFO for Subaru of America. "This award speaks to the quality work our engineers put into equipping our cars with industry leading safety while still making them affordable with standard all-wheel drive."

Criteria to win is tough because the award is intended to drive continued safety improvements such as top crash test ratings and the rapid addition of electronic stability control, which is standard on the Forester.

The 2008 Engine of the Year winners will be announced on the 7th of May 2008. if last year the winner was BMW with its 3-litre Twin Turbo engine found in the 335i, this year BMW has seriously competition as Audi, Nissan, Cadillac and many others are fighting for the title.

The Engine of the Year categories are: Best New Engine of the Year, Best Fuel Economy, Best Performance Engine, sub 1 liter engine, 1.0 to 1.4 liter engine, 1.4 to 1.8 liter engine, 1.8 to 2.0 liter engine, 2.0 to 2.5 liter engine, 2.5 to 3.0 liter engine, 3.0 to 4.0 liter engine, above 4.0 liter engine.

And some of the nominees are:

  • Subaru’s new turbodiesel engine
  • Nissan’s VR38DETT in the new Nissan GT-R
  • Audi’s new twin turbocharged V10 in the RS6
  • BMW’s new 4.0 liter V8 in the new BMW M3
  • BMW’s new twin turbocharged turbodiesel in the BMW 123d
  • BMW’s new 4.4 liter twin turbocharged V8
  • Mitsubishi’s turbocharged 2.0 liter 4B11T in the Evo X
  • Fiat’s 1.4-litre Turbo
  • Chevrolet’s 6.2-litre turbo from the Corvette ZR1

The 2008 Engine of the Year Awards will be decided by 65 automotive journalists from 32 countries.

Volvo Cars’ in-house developed technology for avoiding low-speed collisions - is receiving the American "Traffic Safety Achievement Award" at this year’s World Traffic Safety Symposium in New York.

"City Safety is yet another example of Volvo’s aim to utilise real world traffic situations to develop solutions to prevent accidents. It is extremely gratifying that we are now being acknowledged with this prestigious award," says Jonas Ekmark, head of preventive safety at the Volvo Cars Safety Centre.

Volvo wins international prize for City Safety

At this year’s World Traffic Safety Symposium held at the New York International Auto show, a panel of experts consisting of traffic safety specialists from institutions such as the Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reward various developments that reduce the number of injuries and fatalities on American roads. Volvo’s safety feature, City Safety, made a huge impression on the jury members owing to its ability to prevent or lessen the severity of collisions at low speeds, thus reducing the risk of personal injuries and damage to vehicles.

Posted on by Shrawan Raja 3
Mazda2 is South Africa's Motoring Journalists Car of the Year

South African Guild of Motoring Journalists elected the Mazda2 1,5 as 2008’s Car of the Year. The large gathering at the glitzy event consisted of CEOs of all major motor companies, motor industry representatives and journalists.

The shocking and amazing part is that it came ahead of the Mercedes-Benz C220 CDI, Lexus LS 460 and even the Land Rover Freelander 2.2 TD4 HSE!!

The annual competition is happening for the 23rd time. The 2 is a popular car in SA and only recently, won in the best light car category in CAR Magazine’s annual Top 12 Best Buys.

The Mazda2 is credited with impressing even the harsh Jeremy Clarkson. It is by far one of the safest cars to travel in as it attained maximum 5 Euro NCAP stars. It looks cute, it is light in weight hence easy to handle, and the frugal gasoline engine is easy on your pocket. The 1.3 is offered along side the 1.5 variant in South Africa and this award adds to the mighty brand image of Mazda in that country.

Source: Car Today
Posted on by Shrawan Raja
Toyota Prius

Cars.com, has released its pick of hybrid cars that are presently available in the market. The Toyota Prius was their best pick followed by Saturn Vue Green Line and Honda Civic . Efficiency and price were the two main criteria the rankings were based on.

The hybrids were compared to the lowest-priced, most-efficient gas-only sibling. Both versions of the car were then compared on mileage and price difference, in percent, and the results were derived.

“We know that not all buyers are willing to pay the premium for the sake of driving a hybrid. There needs to be a payoff, so our ranking highlights those hybrids that give buyers the greatest return for their investment,” stated Cars.com senior editor Joe Wiesenfelder.

Source: Cars.com

For the third year running, Car Design News has run an online vote for the best car designs to have debuted in 2007. With over a thousand responses and an international readership that includes more car designers than any other media, this is the most qualified award within the car design world – truly ‘by designers for designers’. Awards were presented to the design team of each winning design at the Geneva Motor Show on Wednesday 5th March.

BMW and Fiat win Car Design of the Year Awards

The award for the best concept show car announced in 2007 went to the BMW Concept CS, with over 51% of readers awarding the BMW a top three ranking.The award was presented to Adrian van Hooydonk, Director Design, BMW Cars, for the BMW Concept CS concept that debuted last year at the Shanghai Motor Show. “This award means a lot to us and the team” said van Hooydonk, “There was a lot of sweat that went into this design so we were pleased with the very positive reaction to the car,especially that from Car Design News”.

Ford has the most top-quality vehicles in the industry, according to a customer-based initial quality survey released by J.D. Power and Associates.The Lincoln Lincoln Mark LT and MKZ, Mercury Mercury Milan and Ford Mustang all captured first-place in their respective segments according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2007 Initial Quality Study.

Click for a short list of Ford’s quality achievement.

Source: Ford

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