The Autocar Awards have named the Volvo XC40, Nissan LEAF, Kia Stinger, Hyundai i30 N, Jaguar I-Pace and Audi A8 as ‘Game Changers’ for the car industry.
Most car awards get it right to a great degree, although we all have our own opinions, but one award we really like is Autocar’s ‘Game Changer’ awards, which set out to highlight new arrivals which aren’t just good cars but which really move the car game on.
This year’s awards have now been bestowed, and the ‘Game Changers’ have been announced, and with one exception (the new Audi A8) we find ourselves in complete agreement.
The Volvo XC40 is the first Game Changer out of the blocks, with praise for the XC40’s alluring abilities and looks. In a very competitive ‘Premium’ sector, the XC40 really is a shining beacon of appeal, looks and abilities.
Unsurprisingly, Hyundai’s i30 N also comes in for praise, not just for its unquestioned abilities but also for the way it is so quickly changing perceptions of Hyundai; Hyundai is now accepted by the great car buying public as a proper ‘mainstream’ brand, but the i30 N is rapidly making buyers see Hyundai as a proper maker of performance cars too.
The Jaguar I-Pace‘s inclusion in the Game Changer listings is a given as the first proper premium EV that’s not a Tesla, with its innovative design, ample power, good range and sensible proportions making it very appealing.
The Kia Stinger makes the list too, as Kia create a sports saloon which really is a good effort to deliver a proper driver’s car. It’s also brave in a market (saloon cars) which is diminishing every day. But then the Stinger is more about changing perceptions than making money.
The latest Nissan LEAF joins the party thanks to its step forward in the second generation car, which delivers an EV which doesn’t shout ‘Look at me – I’m and EV’, has a much bigger range and is much nicer to drive. It’s also not a daft price.
For its Level 3 self-driving abilities, the latest Audi A8 also garners a gong.