The twelve finalists for the 2013 WesBank / SAGMJ Car of the Year competition, South Africa’s premier motoring event, are (in alphabetical order):
- 2012 BMW 3 Series 320i Automatic
- 2012 Ford Ranger 3.2 XLT 4X4 Double Cab Diesel AT 2012 Hyundai i30 1.8 Executive
- 2012 Kia Rio 1.4 TEC Hatch MT
- 2012 Lexus GS 350 EX
- 2012 Mercedes-Benz B 180 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY
- 2012 Nissan Juke 1.6 DIG-T Tekna (Leather)
- 2012 Opel Meriva 1.4T Cosmo
- 2012 Porsche Boxster
- 2012 Range Rover Evoque Si4 Dynamic 5-door
- 2012 Toyota 86 High Spec 6MT
- 2012 Toyota Yaris 1.5 HSD Xs
The next step in the process is to determine the winner from a two-day test session to be held in February 2013 at the Gerotek test facility near Pretoria, where the Jury members will assess the cars independently.
In keeping with the competition’s broadened scope, the testing at Gerotek will allow the vehicles to be evaluated under the conditions individual vehicles would be expected to perform under, with routes designed to test the vehicles in a similar way the average consumer would use them. The test days offer the Jury the opportunity to reacquaint themselves with the vehicles and specific aspects such as aesthetics, build quality, ergonomics, fuel consumption, environmental friendliness, safety features and value for money.
I personally think the Ranger, Evoque and Rio should be the top three.