The Audi A3 is the 2014 World Car of the Year, an award that covers the A3 range rather than a particular model. Why? Because the A3 is available in four body styles: three- and five-door hatchbacks, four-door sedan, and three-door convertible.
A panel of 69 motoring writers from 22 countries chose the Audi over the other two finalists, the Mazda3 and BMW 4-Series. Jurors said the third-generation A3 “offers a silky smooth ride” and a “superb choice of engines.”.
Said Audi chairman Rupert Stadler: “The Audi A3 showcases Audi’s technical competence in all aspects of carmaking, not least in the areas of lightweight technology, drivetrain, mobile infotainment and driver assistance systems.
“This major award win is an achievement that the whole company can celebrate.” It was Audi’s second World COTY win in 10 years, having won the inaugural 2005 award with the A6.
The winner last year was the Volkswagen Golf, with which the A3 shares much of its architecture. Audi of course is part of the Volkswagen Group. The A3’s win is the seventh overall World COTY for Audi. In 2007, the RS4 won the performance gong and the TT the design prize; in 2008, the R8 won both performance and design categories; and in 2010 the R8 V10 won the performance.
The A3 was among five German cars that dominated the 2014 award categories. German cars have won seven of the past 10 World Car of the Year awards; Japanese brands have won the remaining three.
This year’s other winners include the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, which beat the Bentley Flying Spur and Range Rover Sport to become the 2014 World Luxury Car. The Porsche 911 GT3 took top honors in the World Performance Car category, while the BMW i3 won both the World Green Car and World Car Design of the Year awards.
World car of the year winners:
2014 – Audi A3
2013 – Volkswagen Golf Mk7
2012 – Volkswagen Up
2011 – Nissan Leaf
2010 – Volkswagen Polo
2009 – Volkswagen Golf Mk6
2008 – Mazda2
2007 – Lexus LS460
2006 – BMW 3 Series
2005 – Audi A6