In a nod to the assured arrival of the battery-electric age, electrified vehicles swept the World Car Awards presented at the New York Auto Show this week.
This year marks the first that EVs dominated the annual awards, which are presented at the show every spring. The awards, which are chosen by 102 jurors from 33 countries (including myself), underscore the industry’s acceleration toward electrification.
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 took top honors, claiming three of the awards’ six categories: World Car of the Year, World Electric Car and World Car Design. Hyundai’s newest EV bested the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Kia EV6 from its sister brand to earn the top title.
The crossover represents the automaker’s next-generation mobility strategy, with efficient powertrain technology, cutting-edge features and futuristic utilitarian design.
The Mercedes-Benz EQS, the futuristic, electrified version of the automaker’s S-Class executive sedan, was named World Luxury Car for its performance and premium cabin.
As World Performance Car, the Audi e-tron GT couples sporty performance with everyday usability. “Our big goal with the Audi e-tron GT was to reimagine the gran turismo philosophy for the electric age,” says Christiane Zorn, Audi’s head of product marketing.
The single outlier was the Toyota Yaris Cross, winner of the World Urban Car category. However, Toyota’s compact city car is a fuel-efficient, low-emission hybrid.
“Moving forward, we will use this award as motivation as we continue to develop high-quality cars that can meet our customers’ needs and promote environmentally friendly vehicles that can help reduce CO2 emissions,” Toyota Chief Engineer Takatomo Suzuki said in a statement.