At a press conference presented by the MIDWAY GROUP and hosted by the New York International Auto Show at the Jacob Javitz Centre in Manhattan, New York, the MERCEDES-BENZ E320 BLUETEC was declared the 2007 World Green Car.
The MERCEDES-BENZ E320 BLUETEC was chosen from an initial entry list of fourteen (14) contenders nominated by World Car jurors from 22 countries throughout the world.
The World Car of the Year Awards are intended to reflect today’s auto industry and market trends. In that respect, nothing is more au courant than concern for the environment – hence the creation of this eco-friendly category in 2005.
To be eligible for the World Green Car award, a vehicle must be all-new or substantially revised, in production and introduced for sale to consumers in at least one major market between January 1 - December 31, 2006.
In addition, the vehicles must satisfy one or more of the following "green" criterion:
- a. Tailpipe emissions equal to or better than California SULEV or US EPA Tier 2, Bin2, or Euro V regulations, or equivalent.
- b. Fuel consumption equal to or lower than 5.0 L/100km (47.6 mpg US) combined (55% City + 45% Highway) or equivalent.
- c. Use of an advanced power plant technology aimed specifically at increasing their environmental responsibility (e.g. hybrid).
Alternatively, the vehicle/technology may be a prototype or experimental vehicle with near-future application (i.e. will go on the market soon) provided that it:
- a. Addresses today’s environmental issues, per the criteria above; and
- b. Has been released for individual or press fleet evaluations in quantities of ten or more.
Jurors felt that the Mercedes-Benz E320 Bluetec, which the company calls the world’s cleanest diesel, deserves the award for its role in enabling a diesel re-entry to the North American market, as well as for paving the way for super-clean diesel technology around the world. BLUETEC is a modular concept that utilizes several coordinated technical measures to minimize emissions within the engine and also provide for effective exhaust gas treatment downstream. The process involves consistently reducing all relevant emission components to a minimum. The system includes an oxidation catalytic converter and a particulate filter in addition to new techniques for reducing nitrogen oxide emissions.
The top three contenders for the third annual World Green Car in addition to the Mercedes-Benz E320 Bluetec were the BMW Hydrogen 7 and the Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion.
“Mercedes-Benz is very excited that the E320 BLUETEC is the World Green Car of the Year. Distinguished as the cleanest diesel vehicle in the world, the E320 BLUETEC represents a combination of exceptional performance and comfort with exemplary environmental compatibility and fuel economy,” said Christoph Horn, Head of Global Communications Mercedes Car Group.
The global marketplace is a reality. Nowhere is that global reality more apparent than in the automotive industry. European vehicles engineered in South Korea…North American vehicles developed in Australia…Japanese vehicles designed in Europe…American vehicles built in China. And that is just the beginning. Cars from everywhere are being sold everywhere else.
The World Car of the Year (WCOTY) awards were inaugurated to reflect that reality, to recognize and reward automotive excellence on a global scale, and to create consumer awareness of that recognition. This award is intended to complement, not compete with existing national and regional Car of the Year programs.
The inaugural World Car of the Year in 2005 was the Audi A6. In 2006, the BMW 3 Series won the World Car of the Year title.
Announcing the annual World Car of the Year awards at the New York show is a fitting finish to the auto show season that begins each fall with either the Paris or Frankfurt motor shows. Next, it’s on to Tokyo in alternating years. The Detroit show takes centre stage in January while Geneva claims the spotlight in March. Finally, in April, the international auto show season concludes with its grande finale at the New York International Auto Show.
The World Car of the Year Awards Association acknowledges the support of the Midway Group in the presentation of the awards press conference and thanks them for their contribution.