Car of the Year – Who should win?

The short-list for the 2011 Car of the Year (COTY) have just been announced. The COTY is a yearly competition which is judged by a panel of European motoring journalists. Its a winner takes all competition, so there are no winners for different categories of cars, only an overall victor.
We take a look to see which car should win, based on their buzzScores. The buzzScore is the objective rating system we use, which takes the average score given by reviews to each car.
The COTY say the winner is judged using an expert, independent judgement on all new cars, so its a very similar method to the buzzScore, which uses the average on experts opinions to produce an independent rating.
Below, in alphabetical order, are the nominees and their respective buzzScores:

Alfa Romeo Giulietta


buzzScore – 7.6
The Giulietta is Alfas latest hatchback. Its a stylish car thats got impressive reviews. The journalists like the involving drive, good looks and particularly praise the 170bhp MultiAir engine. However it isnt faultless. There are a few complaints about the poor rear visibility and the diesel engines could be more refined.

Citroen C3/DS3


DS3 yellow
Combined buzzScore – 7.6
We’ve split the Citroen C3 and DS3 up into seperate cars, but for the COTY awards theyve been entered as one. The C3 has a buzzScore of 7.1 and the DS3 has a buzzScore of 7.9.
So to calculate the overall buzzScore for them, what we did is worked out what the average would be if we calculated it using all the reviews for both cars. The resultant buzzScore is 7.56, which we round up to 7.6.

Ford C-Max/Grand C-Max


new grand c-max
Combined buzzScore – 8.3
Again for this car we split them up, whereas COTY have combined them. The Ford C-Max currently has a buzzScore of 8.5 (making it the highest rated MPV on sale), and the Grand C-Max has a buzzScore of 8.1.
Working out the buzzScore for both cars combined, we get a buzzScore of 8.33, which is rounded down to 8.3.

Nissan Leaf


Nissan Leaf blue
buzzScore – 7.9
The Nissan Leaf is by far the most innovative car on the COTY shortlist. Its a fully electric car, and its getting some very impressive reviews. Its practical, techonologically advanced and obviously very green! Its not flawless though, it is expensive, even with the Government subsidising part of the cost.

Vauxhall Meriva


new Vauxhall Meriva
buzzScore – 7.9
The new Vauxhall Meriva is the second MPV that has made the shortlist. It too gets a lot of praise from the press. Its clearly been designed for family use, with a versatile interior and innovative doors to help getting in and out. The only real criticism it gets is of the slightly weedy engines.

Volvo S60/V60


new Volvo S60 orange
Combined buzzScore – 7.5
Were not quite sure why COTY have combined these two cars. One is a saloon, the other an estate. The Volvo S60 saloon has a buzzScore of 7.5, and the Volvo V60  estate has a buzzScore of 7.4. Working out the combined buzzScore gives a score of exactly 7.5.
The Dacia Duster has also made the shortlist, however we dont feature that car on our site, as it isnt currently on sale in the UK.


Using the buzzScore for each car as a guide its clear that all the shortlisted entrants are very good cars. By taking the buzzScore there is a clear winner though, the Ford C-Max/Grand C-Max.
With a combined score of 8.3, its obvious that every journalist who has driven it thinks its an excellent car. This, therefore is our predicted winner for the Car of the Year 2011.
Update (30/11/2010) – The Nissan Leaf won!
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