When it comes to the cars lauded as the best by industry professionals and those the public actually go out and buy, there’s often quite a disconnect. So here’s a look at both the models that won 2017 World Car of the Year Awards (WCOTY) and the ones consumers voted for in 2017 with their purchasing decisions.
The 2017 award in the luxury car segment went to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, which wasn’t a bad pick — the best-selling luxury car until the end of October 2017 was actually the Mercedes-Benz C-Class with 304,193 units sold. However, if the E-Class was priced the same as its smaller sibling it would probably have been the bigger seller.
One segment gaining increasing importance globally at the moment is the green car segment, which the WCOTY judges gave to the Toyota Prius Prime in 2017. It’s difficult to dispute that as many green cars are currently versions of existing models, which means sales of the hybrid, EV and combustion models are often lumped together.
When it came to the really big prize — World Car of the Year 2017 — the judges handed it to the Jaguar F-Pace, which was also named World Car Design of the Year. Good as it is, the F-Pace obviously wasn’t the biggest-selling vehicle in the world this year, and it wasn’t even the best-selling SUV, luxury or otherwise.
The best-selling car in the world was once again the Toyota Corolla. The highest-selling SUV was the Toyota RAV, and the luxury SUV that sold best was the Mercedes-Benz GLC with an impressive 247,454 sales worldwide.
But if a true car of the year award was to be given out based on sales it would have to go to the Ford F-series pickup truck. Despite sales being largely limited to North America, the F-Series had sold 886,584 units until the end of October. And it’s now on course to become only the fourth nameplate in history to sell more than one million units worldwide in a calendar year, joining the Toyota Corolla, Ford Focus and the Volkswagen Golf.
There’s an extensive list of nominees for the 2018 WCOTY Award, but perhaps predictably, the Toyota Corolla and Ford F-Series are not among them.