THE fourth-generation Mazda MX-5 has been named both the 2016 World Car of the Year (WCOTY) and the World Car Design of the Year.
It is the second Mazda to win the WCOTY award, following the Mazda2 in 2008, and the first model to win both titles in the history of the awards.
WCOTY was established in 2004 by an international group of automotive journalists, and the judging panel this year consisted of 73 journalists from 23 different countries.
The MX-5 was announced victorious over the Audi A4 Avant and the Mercedes-Benz GLC at the New York International Auto Show on March 24, 2016. The finalists for World Car Design of the Year were the Jaguar XE and the Mazda CX-3.
Masahiro Moro, president and CEO at Mazda North American operations, and managing executive officer at Mazda Motor Corporation, said: ‘What a wonderful honour to have the Mazda MX-5 named both World Car of the Year and World Car Design of the Year.
‘As our iconic roadster approaches one million units of production, this award is proof that it is as young, vibrant, fun and relevant as ever, and proof that every Mazda looks as incredible as it drives, and drives as incredibly as it looks.
‘While I accept this award on behalf of the company, I do so representing every Mazda employee, retail partner and customer around the world who has ever felt the joy of driving a pure roadster.’
Ikuo Maeda, Mazda’s executive officer and general manager of the design division, added: ‘I’m very proud to accept this award, proof that our designs can connect with people all around the world.’
The new MX-5 has won more than 30 awards so far, including 2015-2016 Car of the Year Japan and 2016 UK Car of the Year (UKCOTY). The retractable hardtop version of the model, Mazda MX-5 RF, made its world debut at the 2016 New York International Auto Show.
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