Rüsselsheim/Geneva. The new Opel Astra is “Car of the Year 2016” and therefore the winner of the most renowned award in the industry! The 58-strong jury of automotive journalists from 22 European countries awarded the Astra a total of 312 points versus 294 for the Volvo XC90 and 202 for the Mazda MX-5.
The “Car of the Year 2016” trophy was presented to Opel CEO Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann by COTY president Hakan Matson on the eve of the first press day at the 86th Geneva International Motor Show.
The Astra emerged as the winner from a field of seven COTY finalists. More than 40 new cars, from sporty roadsters to premium limousines and sports utility vehicles, were among the original contenders.
“The new Astra represents the start of a new era at Opel and victory in this year’s ‘Car of the Year’ competition shows that we are on the right track,” said Dr. Karl-Thomas Neumann. “It is an honor for us to receive such a prestigious award from leading automotive journalists.”
Three new Opel models have been named “Car of the Year” in its last eight editions. The new Astra has already won international awards such as SAFETYBEST 2015 and the 2015 Golden Steering Wheel since its launch last fall. It also received the maximum five stars for its performance in the Euro NCAP crash test.
Both the five-door and the Sports Tourer variants of the new titleholder are based on a completely new lightweight vehicle architecture. Power is delivered exclusively by the newest-generation diesel and gasoline engines. Smartphone integration and the groundbreaking personal connectivity and service assistant Opel OnStar enable ultra-modern connectivity. The Astra also continues Opel’s tradition of introducing features previously only known from higher segments into the compact segment, such as IntelliLux LED® matrix light.
The European Car of the Year award was founded in 1964. This year’s victory takes Opel’s total “Car of the Year” tally to five. The Opel Kadett E was the first car from Rüsselsheim to win the award in 1985. Two years later, the Omega A once again took the pan-European accolade. In recent years, Opel has come out on top twice – with the Insignia in 2009 and the Ampera in 2012.