The Opel/Vauxhall Insignia has won the European Car of the Year 2009 (COTY), an accolade conferred by a panel of 59 automotive journalists from 23 countries.
To be eligible for COTY, a car must be launched within the past 12 months and must be available in at least five European countries. The judging panel reviewed criteria such as design, safety, handling and performance. Other important factors considered were technical innovations and value-for-money. The competition’s first stage was in October 2008, when jurors voted and short listed seven finalists from a field of 37 contenders. From these 7 finalists, the COTY panel of judges then voted a second round to pinpoint the overall winner.
Points garnered by the Opel Insignia for COTY 2008 were 321, while the Ford Fiesta was just short of one point of a tie, at 320. Third place went to the VW Golf Mk6 with 223 points. The other COTY finalists were the Citroen C5 with 198 points, Alfa MiTo scored 148 marks, Skoda Superb managed 144 points and Renault Megane registered 121 points.
With this European COTY 2009 award, the Insignia is the third Opel/Vauxhall model to have earned such a prestigious recognition. For the record, the Opel Kadett clinched the title in 1985. Following this, the Omega found repeated success in 1987. Thereafter, Opel has not been able to overcome the awards drought, until now.