Volkswagen can rejoice. Its flagship electric vehicle, the ID.4, is the World Car of the Year 2021.
The stylish sport utility claimed the honor, voted upon by 93 automotive experts from 28 countries. Volkswagen claimed its fifth overall title and won this year against thr BMW 4 Series, Honda e and Mercedes Benz GLA.
Previous Volkswagen Car of the Year award winner included the Golf Mk. 6 (2009), Polo (2010), up! (2012) and Golf Mk. 7 (2013) marking a pattern of Volkswagen usually winning five times in 13 years.
Ralf Brandstatter, Volkswagen CEO, Ralf Brandstatter, commented:
“We are particularly pleased about our ID.4 being named World Car of the Year. Not only because it is one of the most important car awards in the world, but because the jury also honored a great idea and a great team.”
Brandstatter’s enthusiasm is warranted, particularly since the Volkswagen ID.4 is the first fully electric vehicle to win the award. Recent winners include Kia Telluride (2020), Jaguar I-Pace (2019), and Volvo XC60 (2018).
Volkswagen’s latest title showcases the design, production and commitment electric vehicles are receiving from major manufacturers.
A fully electric vehicle utilizes lithium-ion batteries that power an electronic drivetrain. It doesn’t require harmful or polluting fuel substances. Carbon emissions are non-existent. Tow truck visits are far less. Electric operating systems are far less expensive to operate than fuel-based cars.
Electric vehicles have become globally more prominent in recent years. More governments are pushing for climate-changing policies, and it’s had a major impact on the auto industry. The United Kingdom has expressed plans for petrol-based engines to be completely banned by 2030. Its roads would transport low emission diesel, hybrids and fully electric vehicles.
In the UK, Canterbury City Council has recently announced plans to construct more than 650 new electric vehicle charging points right across the borough. It would allow the growing number of EV owners to drive without range anxiety. The council is building these points in response to its prediction of an increase in EV use from 450 to 9,000 by 2025.
In response to the growing trend and demand as well as government plans for EVs, major manufacturers are increasing their electric car offerings. Ford, Toyota, and Porsche, among others, are manufacturing their own electric vehicles to rival best-selling models produced by industry leader Tesla.
However, the news of Tesla’s latest incident resulted in a setback. Two people were killed as occupants of a 2019 Tesla Model S that crashed in a small city near Houston, Texas. According to police reports, neither of the deceased were driving the vehicle and the aftermath of the accident could negatively affect the future of autonomous driving.
Additionally, Volkswagen’s VWAGY program is currently emerging as strong competition against Tesla. Swiss Bank UBS predicts that by 2025 only Tesla and Volkswagen will dominate the global market will direct rivals. and will be in direct competition with each other.
The Swiss bank also predicts that by 2040 the world car market will be 100 percent electric. Vehicles like Volkswagen ID.4 could be among the dominant manufacturers in the industry.
Article Last Updated: August 8, 2023.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.