Peugeot 208 is European Car of the Year 2020

The Peugeot 208 has been named European Car of the Year 2020 in a live-streamed presentation from Geneva.

Peugeot 208 2020

The Peugeot 208 has been named European Car of the Year 2020 in a live-streamed presentation from Geneva (which you can watch below).

A healthy total of 281 points sees the latest 208 follow previous Peugeot victories in 2014 (with the 308) and 2017 (the 3008).

ALSO SEE: Jaguar I-Pace scores thrilling Car of the Year 2019 victory

Jean-Philipe Imparato, executive vice president of Peugeot, said winning the award was “huge… we will immediately be telling our customers about it.

“We are convinced the car deserves it… it is a big surprise, and a big pleasure.”

Peugeot 208 2020

The Peugeot 208 follows the 2019 winner, the Jaguar I-Pace – which scored a narrow win over the Alpine A110 sports car after an unprecedented scores count-back.

“Passion prevailed over reason,” it was said after last year’s event. The judges were clearly mindful of this going into the 2020 competition.

The seven finalists this year (and their final ranking) were:

  • BMW 1 Series (133 points: 7th)
  • Ford Puma (209 points: 5th)
  • Peugeot 208 (281 points: 1st)
  • Porsche Taycan (222 points: 3rd)
  • Renault Clio (211 points: 4th)
  • Tesla Model 3 (242 points: 2nd)
  • Toyota Corolla (152 points: 6th)

Every finalist featured some form of electrification: two of them, the Porsche and Tesla, are pure electric vehicles, while the 208 offers an all-electric derivative, the e-208. 

Car of the Year 2020: live online

Car of the Year 2020 logo

Swiss motoring journalist Melanie Freymond led the live presentation. This was held at the Geneva Palexpo exhibition centre, but behind closed doors.

Results from each country were presented alphabetically, juror by juror – in the style of the Eurovision Song Contest.

Peugeot bosses will receive a trophy made in Italy, by a Spanish artist.

Olivier Rihs, GIMS director, helped open the presentation event. Speaking of the Geneva Motor Show’s cancellation, he said: “We had no choice… we had to cancel.” The circumstances were “beyond our control”.

“We will keep going and fight for next year.”

It was the ninth consecutive time European Car of the Year has been held in Geneva. “It is the automobile prize with the longest tradition,” said Mr Rihs.

Frank Janssen, president of Car of the Year jury, said the award is aimed at real world car buyers. “We want to give the best advice.”

The scores of all judges, including their reasoning, are published on the organisation’s website, for full transparency.

New jury members include UK electric car journalist Vicky Parrott. Car of the Year has an age barrier of 65 years, after which, jury members must retire.

Car of the Year 2020: longlist

  • Audi e-tron
  • BMW 1 Series
  • BMW Z4
  • BMW X6
  • BMW X7
  • DS 3 Crossback
  • Ford Puma
  • Kia e-Soul
  • Mazda 3
  • Mazda CX-30
  • Mercedes-Benz CLA
  • Mercedes-Benz EQC
  • Nissan Juke
  • Opel / Vauxhall Corsa
  • Peugeot 208
  • Porsche 911
  • Porsche Taycan
  • Range Rover Evoque
  • Renault Captur
  • Renault Clio
  • Renault Zoe
  • Skoda Kamiq
  • Skoda Scala
  • Subaru Forester
  • Tesla Model 3
  • Toyota Camry
  • Toyota Corolla
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Toyota GR Supra
  • Volkswagen T-Cross

Watch: how Car of the Year 2020 unfolded

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Richard Aucock
Richard is director at Motoring Research. He has been with us since 2001, and has been a motoring journalist even longer. He won the IMCO Motoring Writer of the Future Award in 1996 and the acclaimed Sir William Lyons Award in 1998. Both awards are run by the Guild of Motoring Writers and Richard is currently chairman of the world's largest organisation for automotive media professionals. Richard is also a juror for World Car Awards and the UK juror for the AUTOBEST awards.


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