And the Car of the Year Is

Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England), January 27, 2012 | Go to article overview

And the Car of the Year Is


Byline: TOM GREENWOOD

THE candidates for the European Car of the Year 2012 have been announced and, it has to be said, they are rather a dull bunch. The list comprises the Citron DS5, Fiat Panda, Ford Focus, Vauxhall Ampera, Range Rover Evoque, Toyota Yaris and the Volkswagen up!.

OK, so the Evoque supplies some slightly 'over-blinged' glamour and the Ampera a dash of depressing futurism, but what is really interesting about this list is how many of the cars are based on much older machines.

The rather attractive DS5 is based on the underpinning of the last generation C4, the Fiat Panda on the last model (a chassis and drivetrain that also sits under the Fiat 500 and Ford Ka) and the dramatically styled Evoque is fundamentally a cut down Freelander under the skin.

It's hardly car of the year stuff is it? That got us thinking. Why would you buy one of these, when you can get the same underpinnings on a second-hand car for a fraction of the price? Here are three examples from UsedCarExpert.

Citroen C4 It still looks very modern, the 'dancing robot' generation of the C4, and indeed looks to our eyes far more modern both inside and out than the car that followed. It's rather a nifty machine too, comfy, versatile, easy to use, spacious and also very, very cheap. UsedCarExpert.co.uk Cars for sale: A 2008 model C4 VTR+ in silver with the semi-auto transmission and a lowly 38,000 miles on the clock can be yours for just pounds 4,300. Compare that to the pounds 25,000 Citroen will charge you for a 2. …

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