Wheels COTY 2003
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View Poll Results: Who will be Wheels COTY 2003?

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  • Audi A8

    1 3.03%
  • BMW 5 Series

    1 3.03%
  • BMW Z4

    1 3.03%
  • Chrysler Crossfire

    0 0%
  • Holden Adventra

    1 3.03%
  • Honda Accord Euro

    5 15.15%
  • Jaguar XJ

    1 3.03%
  • Lexus RX330

    0 0%
  • Mazda RX-8

    8 24.24%
  • Nissan 350Z

    1 3.03%
  • Nissan Maxima

    0 0%
  • Renault Megane II

    1 3.03%
  • Smart Roadster

    2 6.06%
  • Subaru Liberty / Outback

    7 21.21%
  • Toyota Kluger

    1 3.03%
  • Toyota Prius II

    3 9.09%
  • Volkswagen Touareg

    0 0%
  • Volvo XC90

    0 0%
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  1. #1
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Default Wheels COTY 2003

    It's COTY season downunder with Wheels releasing it's 2003 Car of the Year award this week, arguably the most prestigious automotive award in Australia.

    So place your bets I have three questions, but only question 2 is in the poll (as this new board software only allows one poll question per thread it appears):
    1. Who will be the final 3 COTY finalists?
    2. Who will be the winner of Wheels COTY 2003?
    3. Who do you think should be the winner of Wheels COTY 2003?
    For those hoping for a Frog, all your hopes rest on the Megane II, with the C3 being knocked out of contention for being a 'pretender' not a 'contender'.

    What's my tip? I somehow suspect the Subaru Liberty will take the award. Wheels is in absolute love with this car and they always have loved Libertys in the past. For a long time, they did seem to be a notch above what else you could buy for the money, now they compete in what is, IMHO, arguably the most competitive and impressive segment (for the money) in the market. My second pick would be the Accord Euro, but somehow I suspect Wheels has more love for the Liberty.

    Which cars will make it into the final 3? I'd say the Honda Accord Euro, Subaru Liberty & either the BMW 5 Series or the Toyota Prius II. Surprised by the Prius? The Prius II has been doing very well on the international awards circuit (even won COTY in the USA) and the impression I get is it is the most credible eco-car on the market to date. It's something a normal person could potentially live with, not something only the most dedicated of greenies could be bothered to live with thanks to a flotilla of compromises.

    How will the Megane fare? I think it'll make it to the second round, unless the cars have various quality bugs in them, in which case they'll get knocked out at the first round (based on the feel of the cabin, I wouldn't expect it, but then again the Laguna feels fairly good, but had various problems on the COTY cars, and I've since found out it has been having various problems).

    It'll probably be knocked for less than impressive packaging, there'll be a wise crack about it's arse, a weird auto and artificial steering (most reviews I've read always criticise the steering). On the other hand it should receive favourable comments for its refinement, 'finally a French small car that has an interior that can hold its head high with the Golf', good equipment levels and good safety.

    For those holding out for absolutely scintillating comments about the chassis ala Clio with the Aussie press, I think you'll be disappointed. Focus drivers have absolutely nothing to fear at the moment (well, for the time being Renaultsport Megane do I hear )

    Over to the rest of you.

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    Last edited by Pug307; 18th January 2004 at 11:45 PM.

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  2. #2
    Tadpole
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    Top 3:

    Subaru Liberty
    Mazda RX-8
    BMW 5 Series

    Winner:

    Subaru Liberty

    What Should Win:

    Mazda RX-8
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  3. #3
    who? when? huh? GTI124's Avatar
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    It's hard to go past Liberty, it's won it 2 models in a row, even winning when there was just a wagon in the line up.

    However, I think Prius II will be lineball with it. If Subaru hadn't brought out the GT, I think Toyota would win it. As it stands, it's sooo close. Wheels have a history of rewarding innovaton, eg, Merc S Class. So it's going to be there.

    Honda Accord will be the third.

    Who do I think should win? Toyota Prius II. It should be rewarded for it's innovation.
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  4. #4
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Keep the votes and comments coming in. We should know by tomorrow.

    Unfortunately, I don't think they're doing the same thing as last year. Wheels had a set of all the contenders and the winners from the past few decades parked all around Federation Square and there was a good crowd watching the ceremony.

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  5. #5
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    I reckon the Honda Accord, Liberty or RX-8 will win.

    I'm sick of the Liberty winning, but I must admit I do really like the new one. At work the other day there were 7 of them in the (supermarket) carpark parked side by side (all Outbacks, some current shape, some previous).

    Neither the 350Z nor the RX-8 bring enough to the party to take it out I reckon. Not when you consider all of the COTY criteria.

    I'd rather the Accord win than the Liberty. But then again the only car in the feild I've driven is the XC90.
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  6. #6
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Another vote for the Liberty.

    Darkhorses;

    RX330
    Maxima
    5-Series
    Touareg

  7. #7
    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    The Holden will win because:

    a) They pay for the advertising
    b) Wheels sales go up when there is a Commodore on the cover
    c) They'll claim it is "world class", "advanced design" etc. etc. etc.
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  8. #8
    Fellow Frogger! Mitch Mi16's Avatar
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    I love what my mate said when we pulled up next to a RX-8 once...

    "Your car sound more like a rotary than it does!!!" Funny thing is, it did...

    Um, i'd say the liberty, as has been mentioned 2 models in a row, but doesn't certainly mean they will.. Um, other 2 Prius II seeing as it a hybrid, therefore might get some votes.

    Dunno what the third car should be to be honest...
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  9. #9
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    Just seems a shame they can no longer withhold the award like the old Wheels days with the change in rules. Overall there really doesn't seem too much advancement of technology or utility in any of the contending cars.

  10. #10
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    Darkhorses;

    RX330
    Maxima
    5-Series
    Touareg
    Chop the RX330 and Touareg. Any SUV will really struggle with the efficiency criteria. I think the XC90 could potentially beat those two in COTY, based on Wheels' comments in the past (although sometimes I wonder whether Wheels' comments were affected by the fact they were told they'd look like a pack of peanuts on the international scene if they slammed the car ) Pity it has that bloody GM 4 speed with the 6. At the end of the day, it achieves its purpose better than the other two as a vehicle for large families.

    A bit disappointed with the Touareg to be honest, its packaging isn't that clever, especially compared to the XC90. The boot space is really quite ordinary. Nice interior though and you really feel like king of the road with the view of the bonnet out of the driver's seat.

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  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger! Jez 405's Avatar
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    I'm thinking
    BMW 5-Series
    Toyota Prius II
    Honda Accord Euro
    Subaru Liberty

    ...from the left field
    Audi A8

    Personally, I'm hoping the BMW 5-Series or Toyota Prius II will take it. It's been a while since a Euro last took out Wheels COTY (S-Class 99?), usually falling short in the Value for Money category. And the Prius I failed because it was a crap drive.
    I believe both cars present significant advancements in design - the BMW regarding cabin ergonomics and active steering, and Prius in it's Hybrid-Electric drivetrain. They are both pioneers in automotive engineering, and their designs will be copied and improved by other manufacturers.

    I just hope that Wheels won't award COTY to yet another well-built, cheap and reliable fridge, as they have done with the Impreza and Barina. In the end, it will probably be a toss-up between the expensive fridges - Accord Euro and Liberty. They seem to favour the Accord over the Liberty in the latest comparison.

    If the SUV's get axed because of poor efficiency, then so should the Mazda RX8. To me it seems to be a very thourough development of a needlessly difficult design.

    If they let the Adventra anywhere NEAR the top 3, I'm cancelling my subscription. Dunno how that, or the Monaro (year before last) managed to make it through when the VY Commodore didn't.
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  12. #12
    Fellow Frogger! WRX2PUG's Avatar
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    Having just test driven a few cars :

    My opinion only..

    1 - Outback - just bought one for the wife - it's a well put together package
    2 - Accord Euro - good package but a bit expensive and no wagon
    3 - RX8 - I test drove this recently, it is an innovative, well built high performance roead car

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  13. #13
    Good Sport danielsydney's Avatar
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    I hope the smart or the Megane win, but Im biassed though...

  14. #14
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    2004 COTY = Mazda RX8

    Wow I couldn't have predicted that.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    2004 COTY = Mazda RX8

    Wow I couldn't have predicted that.

    I still can't understand how any car that can't even carry its own full size spare wheel could be considered practical enough to be a COTY in Australia.

  16. #16
    2000+ Brad's Avatar
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    How much do we get for guessing the right one? A years subscription to Aussiefrogs?
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  17. #17
    Fellow Frogger! Saru's Avatar
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    Edit: oops, I thought macquered was just making a prediction.


    I voted for the RX-8, but I might be biased

    Top 3: RX-8, Liberty, Adventra

    I'd discount the Accord because from what I've read it's very nice, but not shockingly so. The Liberty is more interesting because of the GT variants but the award is for all cars in a range and I'm not sure that the base models, as good as they are, are amazingly good. The Adventra is interesting but possibly too heavy, too thirsty.

    The RX-8 will win, in my opinion because of:
    - the RENESIS, it's leaps and bounds better than the last of the atmo 13bs
    - packaging, 4 seats in a "sports car" (despite Paul Cockburn thinking they're useless - he sits too far from the wheel)
    - the suicide doors
    - handling, performance etc

    The RX-8 doesn't sound "like a rotary" because, in my experience, all Mazda factory exhausts on RXs don't sound "like a rotary" at idle. Also, the engine in the RX-8 has no overlap, unlike every other rotary, and it's the (extreme) overlap that makes the classic ported rotary idle. They still sound like a rotor at high revs.
    Last edited by Vegas; 20th January 2004 at 10:49 AM.
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  18. #18
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    2004 COTY = Mazda RX8

    Wow I couldn't have predicted that.
    Same here! Wonder how they all feel in Subaru world today

    It should be interesting to read the magazine tomorrow.

    Well done to all those who guessed correctly

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  19. #19
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    BTW, here is the page announcing the win.

    http://carpoint.ninemsn.com.au/news/...up.asp?ID=5650

    The Mazda camp in Mulgrave will be feeling pretty happy today. Talk about a company that has had a renaissance over the past few years!

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  20. #20
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Hey, now the result's been released, you can't keep on voting!

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  21. #21
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Heh yeah the RX8 had 5 votes as of 7:15 this morning.

    Who are the cheaters?

  22. #22
    Fellow Frogger! DTwo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon
    I still can't understand how any car that can't even carry its own full size spare wheel could be considered practical enough to be a COTY in Australia.
    I agree with this statement somewhat......it starts at an affordable $56,000 too

    RX8 should be "car design" or "sports car" of the year?

    I am glad to see some innovation/daring in engine and car design being rewarded/acknowledged though....

  23. #23
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Some of the past COTY's have had expensive and impractical winners.

    Lexus LS400
    Honda NSX
    Mercedes S class

    ....just to think of a few.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    Some of the past COTY's have had expensive and impractical winners.

    Lexus LS400
    Honda NSX
    Mercedes S class

    ....just to think of a few.

    Yep, and according to Wheels, the RX8 has "no direct and obvious competitor".
    How dumb is that? The whole thing is a farce.

  25. #25
    Fellow Frogger! DTwo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by graham66
    Yep, and according to Wheels, the RX8 has "no direct and obvious competitor".
    How dumb is that? The whole thing is a farce.
    Wheels reviews have always needed to be taken with a grain of salt, Their COTY award really isn't all that different......

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