RAC Cars News


2015 European Car Of The Year Candidates: Part Two

By raccars Published

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Few 'best cars' lists escape without the presence of Mercedes-Benz, and in this case there are three of them. The C-Class is, more or less, a diminutive version of the S-Class. It's grown since its last incarnation but managed to shed a bit of weight, whereas the GLA is a chunkier version of the A-Class, which Mercedes-Benz hopes will rival the Range Rover Evoque. The S-Class Coupe is a purring, sleeker take on the S-Class saloon to replace the CL, which its maker is hoping will take on the Bentley Continental GT and the Aston Martin DB9.

It's a few years since Nissan has had a serious contender in the hatchback class, having focused instead - very successfully - on the crossover market. However, the Pulsar will be taking the fight to the Ford Focus while the second generation Qashqai carries on where its hugely successful predecessor left off and both are options for ECOTY 2015.

Vauxhall's all new Corsa, which has always done sterling work for the company, also merits a place while the Peugeot 108 is another small car drawing praise. Part of a badge engineered trio with the Citroen C1 and Toyota Aygo, also on the list, it is unashamedly aimed at female buyers with feminine personalisation options. It will have competition in the form of the all new Renault Twingo, with its unconventional - for a city car - rear wheel drive, rear engined format.

Thanks to the success of the Cayenne, Porsche is dipping another toe in SUV waters with the more compact Macan, which has had plaudits heaped upon from the press and public alike. Not much is known about the upcoming new Skoda Fabia but it's promising enough to be in the running for 2015 ECOTY, while Smart has high hopes for its new ForFour, with all the compact proportions you'd expect from the city car specialist but able to carry four people. At the same time, the new ForTwo has the potential to fulfil the original car's promise, sharing a platform with the aforementioned Renault Twingo.

The Subaru Impreza is making a much longed for return to the market in the form of the WRX STI, wrapping up high performance in a bargain package. A completely different kind of car is a candidate for Suzuki, which is replacing its old fashioned Alto with the spacious and good value for money Celerio.

The Toyota Aygo promises great fun and is certainly distinctive looking, while the new VW Passat is far more sedate in appearance - nonetheless, it comes with some excellent turbocharged engines.

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