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CAR Magazine announced its Top 12 Best Buys for 2016 at a glittering function in Melrose Arch last night. Tracker was proud to be associated with the event for the third consecutive year. There were 12 categories which relate to the South African new vehicle market and the magazine’s editors cast their vote for the best vehicle in each category. With an overwhelming number of individual models to choose from (over 1000) South African consumers need all the help they can get in selecting the one car that best suits their needs – and this is where CAR Top 12 steps in to offer expert insight.

Wayne de Nobrega, Tracker’s CEO, delivered the key note address and focused on the topic of Big Data and what it means for the motoring industry. In his speech he stated, “Data transformed into insight helps us to address customer needs effectively and without this insight the data is basically a collection of facts that have not been interpreted to deliver meaning. At Tracker, it is in our DNA to collect, process and interpret data.”

When Tracker opened its doors in 1996 the focus was Stolen Vehicle Recovery and the purpose of the business was to play a significant role in preventing and reducing crime in South Africa. This was made evident earlier in the year when it announced the recovery of 75 000 vehicles. Their 15 000th arrest is also imminent. 20 years later, the business is still committed to making a difference in society but the commercial landscape has changed and a host of other products and solutions are also offered. De Nobrega said, “We receive over 35 million data messages daily, with the number growing by approximately half a million a month. We then shape these messages into meaningful bits of information to assist our customers and partners to improve and streamline their businesses.”

Criteria for CAR Top 12 Best Buys 2016:

In finalising the candidates for category wins, the CAR Magazine team factored in the road tests and driving impressions that were published in CAR during the previous year – meaning only vehicles they had actually driven themselves would be considered. In all categories, except the Budget Car and Performance Car segments, it is the vehicle’s entire range and not individual models which are considered. Other selection criteria include package, personality, performance and price.


CAR’s Top 12 Best Buys for 2016 are:

  • Budget Car (under R145 000): Volkswagen Up! 1.0 Move
  • Light Hatchback: Volkswagen Polo
  • Light Sedan: Volkswagen Polo Vivo
  • Compact Hatchback: Audi A3/A3 Sportback
  • Compact Sedan: Toyota Corolla Quest
  • Compact Executive Sedan: BMW 3 Series
  • Luxury Car: Mercedes-Benz  S Class
  • Performance Car (overall): Mercedes-AMG GT S
  • Light SUV/Crossover: Kia Soul
  • Compact SUV/Crossover: Ford Kuga
  • Large SUV/Crossover: Range Rover Sport
  • Double-Cab Bakkie: Ford Ranger

CAR Special Awards went to:

  • Company of the Year: Mazda
  • Company to Watch: Volvo
  • Design of the Year (production car): Fiat 124
  • Design of the Year (concept car): Porsche Mission E
  • Re-design of the Year: BMW 1 Series
  • Green Award: Toyota
  • Powertrain of the Year: Opel 1.0 litre EcoFlex
  • Safety Award: Volvo and autonomous driving
  • Most Underrated Product: Peugeot 308

Motorsport Award: Leeroy Poulter