The Mazda CX-5 has emerged as the Overall Winner of the ASEAN Car of the Year 2016. The facelifted CX-5, with improved styling and a wider range of engines that now includes a 2.2-litre SkyActiv-D diesel, narrowly edged out the second-placed Honda Civic and third-placed Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
The race to the top-three spots was so fiercely contested that the winning trio are separated by just slightly more than 2 points. Trailing just 1.77 points behind the Mazda CX-5 is the Honda Civic, while the Mercedes-Benz C-Class is just 0.56 points further behind.
The all-new Honda Civic was the clear favourite among motoring journalists, but it had to concede to the Mazda CX-5 in overall scores as the Mazda secured slightly more votes from vehicle owners and after-sales services partners.
Only models that are sold across Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia (the three largest car markets in the ASEAN region) from January to August 2016, with the highest scores in their respective categories, are eligible for the overall ASEAN Car of the Year awards.
The ASEAN Car of the Year Award is the most transparent, fair and comprehensive award of its kind as the winners are decided by three independent groups; 30 motoring journalists from 18 publications in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand evaluated the product attributes of each model, while over 350 consumers voted on their ownership experience. In addition to this, automotive after-sales services consultant ACS AsiaPac and third-party warranty services provider Opal also evaluated each model’s reliability and after-sales.
Organised by iCar Asia, publisher of Carlist.my, the ASEAN Car of the Year is now in its second year running, and is a non-profit award. There are no participation fees to attend the prize giving ceremony and the commercial rights to the ASEAN Car of the Year logo are given free of charge to the winning brands.
“Congratulations to Mazda, Honda and Mercedes-Benz for their winnings in this year’s ASEAN Car of the Year Award. Clearly, this is a direct result of their efforts in delivering the right products at the right price and engaging their customers in ASEAN in the right manner,” said Mr. Hamish Stone, CEO of iCar Asia Limited, the organizer of the ASEAN Car of the Year 2016.
He also added, “With our market leading automotive portals in Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia, iCar Asia is committed to better serve car buyers by giving them the best tools to shop and compare cars. Our portals, and the car buying audiences that they attract, provide car manufacturers with the most effective digital tools to engage car buyers in this region. The ASEAN Car of the Year is the only award of its kind in this region and is one of iCar Asia’s many efforts to grow ASEAN’s new car market.”
Mr. Bobby Ang, Secretary General of ASEAN Car of the Year also added, “My goal of establishing the ASEAN Car of the Year awards, and to keep it running every year as a non-profit, transparent initiative, is to establish ASEAN’s equivalent to other regional Car of the Year awards in Europe and North America. In doing so, we hope to reward car makers’ hard work in improving and introducing better cars for the ASEAN region, which is currently ranked among the top-ten largest automotive markets in the world.”
Liberty Insurance is the official industry partner for this year's event.
In addition to regional honours, ACOTY also gives out country-level awards, with vehicles categorized into segments that reflect the buying pattern of consumers in each country. For the Malaysian market, a total of 24 category awards were given.
ASEAN CAR OF THE YEAR 2016 – MALAYSIA CATEGORY
Budget Car of the Year: Proton Iriz
Compact Hatch of the Year: Mazda 2 Hatchback
Compact Sedan of the Year: Mazda 2 Sedan
Family Hatch of the Year: Mazda 3 Hatchback
Family Sedan of the Year: Honda Civic
Executive Car of the Year: Mazda 6
Budget MPV of the Year: Toyota Sienta
Mid-Size MPV of the Year: Nissan Serena S-Hybrid
Large MPV of the Year: Honda Odyssey
Crossover of the Year: Mazda CX-3
Mid-Size SUV of the Year: Mazda CX-5
Large SUV of the Year: Nissan X-Trail
Premium Compact Car of the Year: Volvo V40
Premium Family Car of the Year: Mercedes-Benz C-Class
Premium Executive Car of the Year: Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Limousine of the Year: Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Premium Compact SUV of the Year: BMW X1
Premium Mid-Size SUV of the Year: Volvo XC60
Luxury SUV of the Year: Volvo XC90
Driver’s Car of the Year: Volkswagen Golf R
Performance Car of the Year: Porsche 718 Cayman/Boxster
Coupe/Cabrio of the Year: Audi TT
Grand Tourer of the Year: Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe
Pick-up Truck of the Year: Ford Ranger