Mercedes-Benz V-Class Scoops Top Prize
by Becky Harrison |
posted 30 November 2019
Mercedes-Benz scooped the top prize at the 2019 Professional Driver Car of the Year Awards. Britain’s chauffeurs and Private Hire drivers voted the new Mercedes-Benz V220d Long as Car of the Year for 2019. The car also took the prize for MPV of the Year for the third year running.
Professional Driver magazine, launched in 2009, is the monthly publication for the UK private hire, chauffeur and taxi industry. The Professional Driver Car of the Year Awards are now in their 11th year.
The awards are among the most rigorous in the automotive industry. There are nine categories in total, and a two-day judging event is held in September. The Professional Driver Car of the Year is chosen from the nine category winners, and the awards were announced at the Professional Driver Awards dinner earlier in November.
Every shortlisted car is delivered to the venue for evaluation by more than 100 judges, comprising invited heads of leading chauffeur and private hire firms, experienced chauffeurs, as well as carefully chosen motoring editors and journalists. The judges are asked to drive as many of the cars as possible, and have to ride in the back of the cars – so they experience the cars from the customer’s point of view. Then each judge completes a two-page questionnaire, allocating points out of 10 for various features of the cars.
This year, more than 50 vehicles were available for the judges to test on the day, giving them a rare chance to evaluate competing products back-to-back, in real-world conditions. Professional Driver Editor Mark Bursa said: “The Mercedes-Benz V-Class was the clear winner in the MPV of the Year category and is a very deserving Car of the Year for 2019.”
He continued: “It offers exceptional versatility as anything from an events shuttle to an aircrew transporter to a mobile boardroom. It offers high levels of comfort, massive luggage space and that crucial prestige brand. And this year it has gained new, improved powertrains and some superb new safety features.”
Some of the other winners were: the Audi A8L 50 TDI quattro – Chauffeur Car of the Year; the BMW X7 xDrive 30d – Luxury SUV of the Year and the Kia e-Niro – the Green Private Hire Car of the Year.