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This is the 2021 South African Car of the Year

Published Sep 27, 2021


Johannesburg - The Peugeot 2008 has beaten 23 other finalists to emerge the 2021 South African Car of the Year.

The competition, which has been staged by the South African Guild of Mobility Journalists since 1986, also included nine category winners (see below), covering every segment from budget cars through to adventure vehicles, double cabs and new energy vehicles.

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But there can be only one overall winner, and this year the Peugeot 2008 compact SUV was the vehicle that impressed judges the most, with its combination of sophistication and value.

The 2008 was also the most popular vehicle with jurors before the value-based automated scores were added to the overall tally, leading to it also scooping the Juror’s Excellence Award.

Second place overall went to the Toyota Hilux, while the BMW 4 Series took third place in the competition.

These were the 2021 South African Car of the Year category winners:

Budget: Toyota Starlet

Compact: Hyundai Venue

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Family Compact: Peugeot 2008

Family: Audi A4

Premium: BMW 4 Series

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Performance: Porsche 911 Turbo S

New Energy: Porsche Taycan

Adventure SUV: Toyota Land Cruiser Prado

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Double Cab: Toyota Hilux

The SAGMJ also announced the winner of the public vote, with the Motor Enthusiast’s Choice award going to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

The 2021 South African Car of the Year competition was open to vehicles that were launched in the country between November 2019 and April 2021. This was the first year that that the scoring was completely electronic, as there were no official test days in which all the finalists were assembled. As is the case with many international competitions, the jurors - consisting of experienced motoring journalists - rated the cars based on their experiences testing the vehicles throughout the year.

“The 2021 SA Car of the Year (COTY) had its unique challenges. For the first time in the competition’s history, we did not host our scheduled two-day juror evaluation event,” the SAGMJ said. “Thankfully, we had the foresight to create an ongoing online scoring system available to all South African Guild of Mobility Journalists’ (SAGMJ) members in 2019 based on scoring criteria that closely mirrored COTY’s voting criteria.

“The scoring system was initially created to build up a database of vehicles tested, their strengths, weaknesses and to be able to compare them to category contenders.”

Previous South African Car of the Year winners:

2020: Jaguar I-Pace

2019: Mercedes Benz A-Class

2018: Porsche Panamera

2017: Opel Astra

2016: Volvo XC90

2015: Porsche Macan S Diesel

2014: Porsche Cayman S

2013: Porsche Boxster

2012: Hyundai Elantra 1.8 GLS

2011: VW Polo 1.6 TDI and BMW 530d

2010: VW Golf 6 1.4 TSI Comfortline

2009: Honda Accord 2.4i Executive

2008: Mazda 2 1.5 Individual

2007: Honda Civic 1.8 VXi

2006: Audi A3 Sportback 2.0 TFSI

2005: Volvo S40 2.4i

2004: Renault Mégane 1.9 dCi

2003: VW Polo 1.4 TDI

2002: Audi A4 1.9 TDI

2001: BMW 320d

2000: Renault Clio 1.4 RT

1999: Alfa Romeo 156 T-Spark

1998: Ford Fiesta Fun

1997: BMW 528i

1996: Audi A4 1.8

1995: Opel Astra 160iS

1994: Opel Kadett 140

1993: BMW 316i

1992: Nissan Maxima 300 SE

1991: Opel Monza 160 GSi

1990 - BMW 525i

1989: Toyota Corolla GLi Executive

1988: BMW 735i

1987: Mercedes-Benz 260E

1986: Toyota Corolla GLi

IOL Motoring

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