10 class-leading new cars honoured at Singapore's top automotive awards
Star awards of motor industry Ms Belinda Bay, general manager of BMW agent Performance Motors, and Mr Sethipong Anutarasoti (centre), corporate affairs director of BMW Group Asia, receiving the trophy that honours the BMW i3 as ST Car of the Year 2014

A section of Raffles Hotel’s Bar and Billiard Room was a little livelier yesterday afternoon when an eclectic mix of motoring scribes and auto executives converged there.

The occasion was the fourth ST-Torque Awards, where the best cars of 2014 were celebrated in a timehonoured fashion – with good food, good conversation and trophies to take home.

The list of winners for 2014 are:

  • BMW i3 (ST Car of the Year 2014);
  • Audi S3 Sportback/Sedan (Best Performance Hatchback/Saloon);
  • BMW 2-series (Best Notchback Coupe);
  • Hyundai Genesis (Best Six-Cylinder Luxury Saloon);
  • Lexus ES (Best Four-Cylinder Luxury Saloon);
  • Mercedes-Benz C-class (Best Compact Executive Saloon);
  • Mercedes-Benz S-class (Best Limousine);
  • Mini Hatch (Best Three-Door Hatchback);
  • Porsche Macan (Best Sport-Utility Vehicle); and
  • Toyota Corolla Altis (Best Family Saloon).

As in previous years, the voting regimen was vigorous and thorough. Each contender was rated according to performance, handling, ride, build quality, efficiency, ergonomics, styling, value for money and the elusive X-factor.

Torque editor David Ting says the awards “continue to be the most objective and most important validation in Singapore of newly introduced cars”.

He adds: “We congratulate the manufacturers and distributors of the winning models.”

BMW Group Asia managing director Axel Pannes says: “The BMW i3’s winning of this prestigious award is an affirmation of its position as a game changer in the auto industry. We’re delighted that the judges recognise the tireless effort spent by our engineers in bringing the Future Mobility to reality.”

Mr Koh Ching Hong, managing director of Toyota agent Borneo Motors, says the awards are “a recognition of the people’s choice”.

“When we launched the Corolla Altis, our first objective was to make it the bestselling model in Singapore,” Mr Koh recalls.

“The results speak for themselves.”

Close to 1,900 new Corollas were registered last year, putting the model ahead of past recent top sellers such as BMW 5- series and Mercedes-Benz E-class.

Mr Koh says “the same goes for the Lexus ES... which was well accepted from the day it was launched”.

Toyota, with its two wins, was the only Japanese brand on the podium this year. The awards were dominated by the Germans, including Audi.

Audi Singapore managing director Jeff Mannering says: “The Audi S3 is the most exclusive model in our very successful A3 family... We are glad that the judging panel feels the same.”

The cars were judged alongside their peers and not against one another.

Ms Pang Lee Cheng, general manager in the Men’s & Special Interest division of SPH Magazines, says: “My congratulations to the respective automakers which have garnered these professional accolades in the latest ST-Torque Awards, which are the gold standard in independent editorial recognition of product merit.”