Car Dealer Power

Car Dealer Power Car of the Year 2024: BYD Dolphin

  • Car dealers across the country have voted for their best car of the year
  • BYD Dolphin takes top gong, while BMW i5 and Suzuki Swift are runners-up
  • Car Dealer Power gong is like no other car of the year title in UK as it’s voted for by dealers no matter what brand they represent

Time 6:36 pm, July 3, 2024

Car dealers across the UK have voted the BYD Dolphin at their car of the year.

The electric hatchback from UK market newcomer BYD scooped the top gong, while the BMW i5 and Suzuki Swift took home highly commended awards.

The Car Dealer Power Car of the Year award differs from other similarly titled awards handed out by motoring magazines and judging panels, as it’s voted for car dealers regardless of which brands they represent.

The BYD Dolphin was the clear winner in this year’s survey.

Despite being an unknown entity over 12 months ago, BYD is now the Chinese carmaker to watch.

Dealers are queuing up for a franchise, and customers are giving BYD’s products serious consideration when it comes to going electric.

The Dolphin in particular shows an electric hatchback needn’t be expensive – relatively speaking for an EV – and undercuts nearly all of its European competition on price alone.

Factor in a decent 200-265 mile range, seating for five, and all the tech you’d ever need, it’s easy to see why dealers have voted it car of the year.

Dealers told us they believed the Dolphin is ‘a bit of a game changer’.

BMW took home a highly commended gong for its i5.

You could say BMW lost interest in electric cars for a time, but they’re very much back on the agenda for the German firm now – and back in a big way.

The i5 is the latest and it’s super important because this is the car, along with the smaller i4, BMW is using to woo company car drivers.

And it’s working – the i5 is becoming a familiar sight on the outside lane of the motorway.

The i5 is also efficient, packed with tech and, just like a typical BMW, good to drive.

The final highly commended place went to the Suzuki Swift – the only non-electric car in the awards.

With the demise of the Ford Fiesta you might assume the small car was on life support, but that’s not the case.

The Swift is the perfect example of a carmaker not ignoring a key group of customers who maybe are not ready to switch to an EV, can’t afford one, or simply don’t want one.

Dealers told us it’s the perfect car for the times, and that they’ve been selling them by the bucketload.

It’s easy to see why as the Swift is fun to drive with an eager little petrol engine, it comes with a manual gearbox, it’s frugal and well equipped. And with prices starting from under £20,000 it’s also very well priced.

Congratulations to all three on their hugely deserved gongs.

James Batchelor's avatar

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer. In October 2021 he became Car Dealer's associate editor.

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