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EVs charge to second consecutive NZ Car of the Year win

The all-electric Mercedes-Benz EQC has won the prestigious 2020 New Zealand Car of the
Year – the second year running for an electric vehicle.

The EQC is a notable vehicle not only in its own right, but also as the first member of the
vitally important fully-electric Mercedes EQ range, which is set to expand to 10 new models of various shapes, sizes and configurations within the next three years.

The New Zealand Car of the Year is selected by members of the New Zealand Motoring
Writers’ Guild, the professional body for motoring journalists and content creators from
around the country. The guild’s two-dozen voting members test the vehicles in their home
environment – important for providing a ‘real world’ result.

2020 NZ Car of the Year

The prestigious award, now in its 33rd year, was announced live on Seven Sharp by
presenters Hilary Barry and Jeremy Wells.
Guild President Richard Edwards says the win for the Mercedes-Benz EQC sends a strong
signal that the future for motoring in New Zealand will include electrification.

“The Mercedes-Benz EQC is a brilliant vehicle; offering ‘electric’ performance, handling,
technology, comfort and safety – without having to ever visit a fuel pump,” Edwards says.

“And with a potential range in excess of 400km, ‘range anxiety’ is a thing of the past.”
It is also an example of how in some segments, electric vehicles are nearing price parity with their petrol and diesel counterparts.

“If you look at where the EQC fits into the broader Mercedes-Benz range on size,
specification and performance, its price is not out of place at all.

“Like the 2019 winner, the EQC offers a kind of seamless performance that conventional
vehicles simply can’t match. I expect many more electrified vehicles to follow it as New
Zealand Car of the Year.”

Mercedes-Benz Cars New Zealand General Manager Lance Bennett says the team is
honoured to accept the New Zealand Car of the Year.

“The entire Mercedes-Benz New Zealand team is incredibly proud of the EQC, and
honoured to accept this prestigious award,” Bennett says.

Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 review NZ

“New Zealanders love their SUVs and exploring the outdoors, and we believe the EQC
offers a new way to do this with everything our customers expect from a Mercedes-Benz
SUV – including refinement, safety, style and practicality – plus the added benefits of near-
silent EV power.

“Mercedes-Benz is both the world’s oldest car manufacturer and New Zealand’s best-selling
luxury brand, and we strive to deliver the finest automobiles to our local customers, who
expect nothing but the best.

Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 review NZ

“The EQC is a powerful first step towards our vision of a sustainable, carbon-neutral future,
and we sincerely appreciate the recognition. Please look forward to seeing a lot more from
Mercedes-Benz in this space very soon.”
The win comes at a watershed time for motoring in New Zealand, with the Government announcing a ‘Climate Emergency’ and pushing for an increasing uptake of electrified vehicles.

The 2019 winner was the all-electric Jaguar iPace, while the 2018 winner, the Subaru
Forester, is now available as a petrol-electric hybrid.

“While the EQC is a premium option in the market, there are now new electric cars and
commercials on sale for as little as $48,990. The time for businesses and the public to
consider the switch is now,” says Edwards.
The Guild represents New Zealand’s motoring journalists, and is considered to be the most
prestigious New Zealand Car of the Year award, given its longevity over more than three decades as well as being a truly independent assessment of a new vehicle’s qualities and attributes across a broad range of criteria.

Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 review NZ

The ten new vehicles in contention for the 2020 award included two small cars – the Ford
Fiesta and Toyota Yaris – and eight SUV newcomers; namely the Audi Q3, Kia Seltos, Land Rover Defender, Mazda CX-30, Mercedes-Benz EQC, Mercedes-Benz GLB, Peugeot 2008
and Skoda Kamiq.

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