The 2019 Jaguar I-Pace Wins European Car of the Year at the Geneva Motor Show
The jury that comprised 60 journalists from 23 countries had to pick from seven finalist vehicles this year. The I-Pace scored 250 points and took a narrow win over the Alpine A110, which had similar results. The Kia Ceed ended the competition in third place with 247 points. Fourth on the list was the new Ford Focus (235 points).
The remaining finalists were the Citroen C5 Aircross (210 points), the Peugeot 508 (192 points), and the Mercedes-Benz A-Class (116). Surprisingly enough, the C5 Aircross was the only crossover on this list. The 2017 and 2018 awards saw two crossovers make it in the finals. In 2018, the award went to an SUV, the Volvo XC40.
First EV to win since 2011
The Jaguar I-Pace was the only electric car on this year's finalist list, but it's also the first EV to win the award since 2011, when the Nissan Leaf took the prize ahead of the Alfa Romeo Giulia.
The BMW i3 and Tesla Model S came close in 2014, when they lost to the Peugeot 308.
As for hybrids, the Opel Ampera won the award in 2012, while the Toyota Prius triumphed back in 2005. The Toyota CH-R is among the very few hybrids that made it in the finals in recent years.
Jaguar’s only victory so far
The I-Pace is the first Jaguar to win the European car of the Year award and the first to make it in the finals since 2016. Three years ago, the XE sedan finished fourth behind the Opel Astra, Volvo XC90, Mazda MX-5, and Audi A4. In 2002, the X-Type took last place in a final won by the Peugeot 307.
The Award dates back to 1964
The European Car of the Year award was established in 1964 for new cars released in the twelve months prior to the award.
The inaugural prize was won by the Rover 2000, followed by the Austin 1800 in 1965 and the Renault 16 in 1966.
Fiat is the automaker with the most wins, scoring nine awards between 1967 and 2008. Notable cars that won the prize include the 124, Punto, Bravo, and the 500. Renault comes in second with six awards between 1966 and 2006, two of which were scored by the Clio. Ford, Opel, and Peugeot have won five awards, while Volkswagen has four trophies.
As an interesting fact, Toyota is the only non-European carmaker that own this award. Although Ford has five under its belt, all were taken for models developed in Europe. Chevrolet is also listed as winner for the Volt, which was a joint candidate with the Opel and Vauxhall Ampera in 2012.
The Renault Clio and Volkswagen Golf are the only cars that won the award twice. The prize was given to only four premium cars so far: Mercedes-Benz S-Class (1974), Porsche 928 (1978), Volvo XC40 (2018), and Jaguar I-Pace (2019).
Read our full review on the 2019 Jaguar I-Pace.