17 cars, 250,000 miles …
Autocar, the world’s oldest car magazine has named its best new cars for every lifestyle in its annual Long-term Test Car Awards.
The 17 cars were run by Autocar staff during 2011, racking up more than 250,000 miles on UK and European roads as they were put to the test to find out how they fared with the challenges thrown at them in everyday life.
Autocar Editor Jim Holder said “The Autocar 2011 long termer car fleet has been more varied than ever before – we have run the most expensive car in the magazine’s history, the £170,000 Mercedes SLS, an electric car, a hybrid and supersports cars alongside mass market cars like the Seat Leon and Ford Focus. It has taken the team a lot of deliberation to select our winners.”
Winning the award for best long termer for B-ROAD THRASH is the Porsche Cayman. Autocar’s road tester Matt Prior describes it as “one of the best legal mood-enhancers money can buy.”
The BMW 520d Touring was awarded best long termer for FAMILY LIFE. Editor Jim Holder was quoted saying “It’s spacious, upmarket, refined, economical, superior to drive and reassuringly expensive to buy.”
The best long termer for LONG DISTANCE TOURING was awarded to the Range Rover TDV8, the undisputed king of the road with the team praising its unique ability to make a long journey feel like a short one.
The first Autocar electric long-term test car, the Nissan Leaf was awarded best car on the fleet for A RUN INTO TOWN. Autocar production editor Allan Muir said: “It’s smooth, quiet and easy to drive, and the torquey power delivery is ideal for stop-start urban running.”
The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG was unanimously awarded the best test car in the IF I COULD HAVE JUST ONE OF THEM category. Steve Cropley editor in chief said “I’d keep it forever if I could!”
Alfa Romeo Giulietta
Bentley Continental GTC
BMW 1-series M Coupé
BMW 520d Touring
Ford Focus 1.6 TDCi
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG
Mini Cooper SD
Mini Coupé JCW
Range Rover TDV8
Seat Leon Ecomotive