On Thursday, the World Car Awards launched its 2022 program and published the list of eligible vehicles for the upcoming contest. When the winners are announced at next year’s New York International Auto Show, there will be a new category just for battery-electric vehicles.
“There has never been a better time to highlight and celebrate the world’s best electric vehicles. We are thrilled to once again be part of this year’s World Car Awards. With the importance of EVs and growing consumer interest, the need for trusted sources for consumers to turn to is paramount, and like the New York Auto Show, the industry’s top journalists that make up the World Car Awards are a trusted resource for buyers as they research their next new vehicle,” said Auto Show President Mark Schienberg.
BEVs will be eligible to win the overall 2022 World Car of the Year award; the rules just require that a car be produced in volumes of at least 10,000 a year. The vehicle must also “be priced below the luxury-car level in their primary markets” and must be available in two major markets (China, Europe, India, Japan, Korea, Latin America, and the USA) in at least two continents, between January 1, 2021, and March 30, 2022.
Which EVs are eligible?
Several BEVs are in contention for the top award, including the Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 e-tron Sportback, BMW i4, Hyundai Ioniq 5, and Kia EV6. History tells us that one of these vehicles has a pretty good shot at the win; all things being equal, an EV will score higher than an internal combustion engine vehicle since environmental impact is one of the scoring criteria. (Full disclosure: I have been one of the US jurors for the awards for the last few years, but I’m not involved in the selection criteria.)
Jaguar’s I-Pace won overall in 2019, and the Volkswagen ID.4 won overall in 2021; if the Porsche Taycan Turbo had been eligible in 2020, it would probably also have romped home to victory but for the fact that it was too expensive to qualify. (It still won World Performance Car of the Year and World Luxury Car of the Year in 2020.)
More BEVs have a chance at the 2022 World Electric Car of the Year Award. Annual production volume needs to be only 5,000 cars a year, and there’s no price cap, but the requirement to be on sale in two major markets on two continents between January 1, 2021, and March 30, 2022, still applies. In addition to the aforementioned Audi, BMW, Hyundai, and Kia, the award is also open to the Audi e-tron GT, the BMW iX, the BMW iX3, and the Volvo C40 Recharge.