“It’s very hard to win this award! Imagine so many women ever agreeing on anything,” joked Sandy Myhre, chairperson of Women’s World Car Of The Year (WWCOTY) during the 2016 WWCOTY award presentation held at the Jaguar design centre in Whitley, UK, recently.
Twenty-six women motoring journalists from around the world were jurors for the Women’s World Car of the Year. Started eight years ago, this group has grown from strength to strength for an award which is considered to be one of the most coveted in the automotive world.
Dr Ralph Speth, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), while accepting the WWCOTY trophy, said, “This award is something special!” Ian Callum, director of design at JLR, received both SUV/Crossover winner certificate and the Supreme award winner certificate for the F-Pace. He said, “I’m speechless.”
History was made at the 2016 WWCOTY as with 11 of the 26 jurors being present meant it was the first time that so many women motoring journalists from across the world had gathered in one room to decide the winner. The voting process was a rigorous one, with each juror sending in her recommendation of eligible cars, the criterion being the cars had to be sold across at least 10 countries. Once the list was finalised, the voting process went through a series of rounds and finally the category winners and the top honour or the ‘Supreme Winner’ was decided with the help of auditors Grant Thornton.
Overall, the award ceremony was fun. Jane Roche, manager, global executive events at JLR, said she had never experienced such high energy levels, not to mention the sound level as well.
The event also allowed the journalists some insights into JLR’s future, but there is an embargo on writing anything about them. Fiona Pargeter, head of global PR communications, JLR, said, “You can say you have had a sneak peek into the future of Jaguar.” My only comment is that the future at JLR does look bright.