The inaugural winners of the new Autocar Britain’s Best Car Awards will be revealed on 21 October as we strive to steer readers towards the very best cars on sale in a marketplace that has never offered more choice.

These new awards, which will be announced online and in print, have been launched as a result of booming online traffic to Autocar’s reviews from car buyers. They will be a standalone event in 2020, before the initiative is rolled into an expanded main Autocar Awards that will return to its traditional calendar slot in May 2021.

The focus of the Britain’s Best Car Awards will be on highlighting the very best mainstream cars. At next year’s Autocar Awards, these new awards will replace the Game Changers category. The Autocar Awards will continue to celebrate the individual achievements of the people that make the industry so special, but it will now expand to celebrate more of the great cars the industry creates, too.

Uniquely, the 10 Britain’s Best Cars categories will announce winners that have been designed to reflect the fact car buyers cross-shop across traditional segments and rivals, and even within a manufacturer’s own showroom. Today, for instance, a family car could range from anything from a supermini to a large SUV and everything in between.

The winners will be chosen by Autocar’s expert testers, with the brief to put cars that everyday motorists want to own and drive in the spotlight. Crucially, winners won’t just be chosen on their objective merits; judges will also assess the more nuanced and subjective factors of how likeable and enjoyable a car is before declaring results.

There will also be two additional awards: one to commend the best new car technology of the past 12 months and one to award the manufacturer with the range of cars that has impressed us the most the past year. 

Autocar editor Mark Tisshaw said: “Our online review traffic is booming, driven to a significant extent by a new audience of car buyers who want to research and validate their decisions by reading our reviews and Top 10 Best Car lists. These awards are designed to further help steer these readers towards the very best cars in the industry.

“As always, our verdicts will be delivered with expertise and warmth: the experience and expertise of our testers means they are uniquely placed to offer great car-buying advice from the perspective of car lovers. As well as being great to drive and own, our picks will be loveable cars that owners can cherish.

“But the best rule is always to have very few rules, and that’s why we won’t be following traditional categories but rather reflecting how people actually buy cars across different categories and considering all sorts of – sometimes contradictory – criteria. The Awards are launching now to reflect how differently people choose and buy cars these days.”

Autocar Britiain’s Best Car Awards categories

Best company car

The best car for a DIY payrise

Best fun car

The car that offers the most accessible fun

Best family car

The car least likely to make the kids say ‘are we nearly there yet?’

Best all-rounder

The one-car-for-every-job car you would still get up early to drive without breaking the bank 

Best electric car

The ‘plug converter’ award for electric cars with charm

Best hybrid car

The ‘best of both worlds’ award for the car to bridge the old world with the new

Best large car

The ‘toast of the tip run’ award for everyday versatility and practicality

Best small car

The little legend award for small cars with a big personality

Best SUV

The SUV that best mixes on and off-road appeal with real versatility 

Best dream car

The epic car you would raid the pension to keep forever – and still drive every day

Best car tech

The must-have technology that’s blazing a trail across the industry

Best manufacturer

The car maker that has impressed us the most across the board this year

READ MORE

Autocar Awards 2020: all the winners

Autocar Awards 2020 podcast special – listen to our winners

Autocar Awards 2020: watch the video

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