|February 13, 2008
Audi R8 Wins AJAC's 2008 Best New Design Award
Toronto, ON - The Audi R8 won the "Best New Design" award for 2008 as presented by the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC). The award was handed out as part of the 2008 Canadian Car of the Year (CCOTY) awards that opened the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto.
Canadian independent designer Paul Deutschman, Humber College automotive design professor Ken Cummings, and Automobile magazine's design critic Robert Cumberford were appointed by AJAC as a panel of design experts. Their task was a difficult one: create a short-list of four "Best New Design" finalists from the full-slate of fifty-nine entries in the Canadian Car of the Year awards program.
They chose the Audi R8 ("A real tour de force in terms of design, materials, structure and performance" - Robert Cumberford), the Chevrolet Malibu ("If Chevy can't recapture some market share with this handsome entry, the aging population is losing their eyesight" - Ken Cummings), the Infiniti G37 Coupe ("Hats off to the Infiniti designers- they have succeeded in creating a design language that is both original and desirable" - Paul Deutschman), and the Volvo C30 ("Volvo is breaking into a new segment with a funky wagon that offers practicality and strong originality" - Paul Deutschman).
AJAC journalists then selected the winner from the design expert's short-list based on a combination of aesthetics, function, and brand essence. Each parameter was rated separately for each of the design finalists. The aesthetics score reflects the sheer beauty of the design. The function score assesses the manner and degree to which it accommodates the practical requirements of the vehicle type. And brand essence considers its success in conveying the image, heritage, and values of the specific brand.
"The intent of the AJAC Best New Design award is to identify and reward the vehicle that exhibits the best balance of form and function", said Paul Williams, co-chair of the 2008 CCOTY awards.
AJAC's annual Canadian Car of the Year awards program was created in 1985 with the purpose of providing consumers with sound, comparative information on vehicles that are new to the market.
For that reason, the vote results that determined today's winners are available to consumers as a resource buying guide on the AJAC web site. Also available are the comparative test data derived from the journalists' extensive four day evaluation of over 170 new vehicles in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario in October. This annual event is known in the industry as "TestFest". Shell Canada is the official fuel supplier of the event.
The rigorous TestFest evaluation program includes real world driving on public roads - exactly where consumers drive so that the test and vote results posted to the AJAC web site are directly relevant to potential car and truck buyers.
Photos from today's award announcements, the December 4th category winners, and the TestFest evaluation event, are available for print and broadcast media under "Canadian Car of the Year" "Photo Gallery" on the AJAC web site.
In addition, our AJAC journalists who evaluated the brand new models at TestFest are available across Canada for interviews to talk about the vote results and comparative data.