GENEVA — The Volkswagen Golf has been named Europe’s Car of the Year by automotive journalists from more than 20 countries at the Geneva Motor Show, now under way.
Introduced in 1974 and recently redesigned, the hatchback is the company’s mass-market flagship – and a key element in its ambition to overtake Toyota as the world’s biggest carmaker.
The car left the competition in the dust, grabbing 414 votes. The Subaru BRZ, also sold as the Toyota GT-86 (Scion FR-S in the U.S.), was second with 202 votes, and the Volvo V40 third with 189 votes.
The award is one of the most important in Europe and gives consumers an idea of what the experts think the car of the future is.
Alfa plans US invasion
DETROIT — After a 30-year absence, Italy’s storied Alfa Romeo brand will return to the United States later this year with a new two-seat compact sports car.
Italian automaker Fiat SpA said Tuesday that the long-delayed Alfa 4C will go on sale during the second half of the year. Fiat owns Alfa and controls Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Ram in the U.S.
The 4C debuted in Geneva. The low-sitting car with flared fenders is based on Alfa’s history of racing. It has a turbocharged 1.75-liter aluminum four-cylinder engine with 200-plus horsepower. The chassis is made of lightweight and expensive carbon fiber.
The rear-wheel-drive car will cost around $60,000 in the U.S. and be sold at U.S. Fiat dealers.
The company plans to make about 1,500 per year at a Maserati factory in Modena, Italy. Half the cars will be sent to the U.S.
Fiat has promised the 4C would lead Alfa’s return to the U.S. ever since a concept prototype was put on display in Geneva in 2011.