The 2022 installment of South Africa’s Car of the Year is in full swing with 25 finalists vying for the crown, that span across a total of ten categories of models launched between 31 March and 31 December 2021.
Peugeot and its innovative 2008 SUV claimed the coveted prize in 2021 and the French brand will be hoping for more of the same success when the winner will be decided in early April. The Landtrek bakkie and 208 hatchback are the two models currently in the running in the 4×4 Double Cab and Compact categories, respectively.
Besides the overall winner’s crown, finalists can also win one of ten categories: Budget, Compact, Compact Family, Midsize, Premium, Luxury, Performance, New Energy, Adventure SUV and 4X4 Double Cab. To show just how competitive the competition is, popular models like the Honda Fit, Land Rover Defender V8 and Haval Jolion all missed the cut-off mark by a single point. Also worth noting is the Budget category that has no contenders this year.
On the topic of French cars, they once used to have something of frayed reputation in South Africa and not too long ago was not many people’s first choice. From a more modern design to improved reliability, things have changed massively over the last couple of decades.
Graham Eagle, Chairman of the 2022 COTY committee, says: “The Car of the Year committee is extremely pleased with the variety of vehicles that made the Finalist round of this year’s competition. Our jury panel of experts has a tough task ahead of them.”
Take a look at the complete 2022 South African Car of the Year finalists: