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Sweden's Volvo wins monumental Japanese Car of the Year

2017-12-11 19:34

Image: Newspress

Tokyo - In a monumental battle for Japan's Car of the Year title, the Swedish-built Volvo XC60 has grabbed the coveted trophy.

In a nail-biting voting session, that saw the lead change three times between the XC60, BMW 5 Series and Toyota Camry, the Swedish crossover pulled away in the closing moments, to grab 294 votes and clinch the 2018 Japan Car of the Year. 

The XC60 finished 52 votes clear of the 5 Series and 62 ahead of the closest Japanese competitor, the Camry.

The new XC60 SUV is set to arrive in South Africa during the second quarter of 2018.

First for Volvo in Japan

Image: Newspress

Volvo Japan CEO Takayuki Kimura said: "This is the first time in Japan COTY’s 38-year history that Volvo has won an award. To be honest, I would have been happy with the Import Car of the Year*. But to come away with the overall Japan Car of the Year is totally unexpected and sincerely humbling. I dedicate this award to the 100 dealers and 1400 staff across the nation." 

Japanese Car of the Year finalists:
1 Volvo XC60
2 BMW 5 Series
3 Toyota Camry
4 Suzuki Swift 
5 Honda N-Box  
5 Lexus LC 
6 Alfa Romeo Giulia 
7 Mazda CX-5 
8 Citroen C3 
9 VW Tiguan 

In the special award categories, Toyota picked up a hat-trick of trophies; one for Best Innovation for its Prius PHEV while the Lexus LC captured the Emotional Award.

Image: Newspress

Toyota picked up the COTY steering committee’s ‘Special Achievement Award’ for the brand’s 10 millionth hybrid sale. 

Image: Newspress

The Honda N-Box won the Small Mobility Award for being judged the best vehicle in Japan’s unique 660cc class category.

A second Special Achievement Award was presented to racer Takuma Sato for his unforgettable victory in this year’s Indy 500, making him the first Japanese to win the legendary race.

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