The 8th edition of AUTOBEST AWARDS festivity took place this year on January 29th, in Grand Ballroom of the new Four Seasons Bosphorus Hotel, in Istanbul, Turkey. For the ceremony attended more than 150 persons, including the members of the jury, international guests, key executives from the Turkish auto industry, top-representative journalists from Turkey and other countries, VIP’s from Turkey.
Very important names of the automobiles industry have been present this year in the Four Seasons Bosphorus Hotel - Grand Ballroom in Istanbul: Christian Esteve – Senior Vice President of Renault group, President of the Euromed Region, John Fleming, Chairman and CEO Ford of Europe, Ian Slater – Vice-president Communications Ford Europe, Luca de Meo – Chief Marketing Officer Fiat Group, CEO Alfa Romeo and Abarth, Mark Adams, – GM Europe Vice President design and Celal Caglar, Oyak Cement and Automotive Group Chairman.
Renault Symbol / Thalia was voted “AUTOBEST 2009”. With a total of 879 points, the winner overtook Ford Fiesta with only 49 points, making this one of the closest victories in the history of Autobest. Dacia Sandero came third, with a total of 700 points. 10 members of the Jury selected Symbol as the winner, and other 4 gave the first place to Ford Fiesta. Dacia Sandero managed to obtain just one no. 1 position. Mitsubishi Lancer came on 4th place, with 661 points and Chevy Aveo on 5th, collecting 530 points.
“In 1998 I started to discover your region working for Dacia. Before I was in charge in different functions only in Western Europe. I can tell you here that Autobest region is one of the most important in the world. The election of the new Symbol as “Autobest 2009” is a victory not only for Renault but also for you, for the OYAK Renault factory here in Bursa.” said Christian Esteve in receiving the award. Ilja Seliktar, President of the Autobest Jury, also congratulated Renault MAIS organization who made Symbol the best selling car in Turkey for years and the Renault Tehnocentre for developing a great car designed for the needs of regular customers in Autobest region.
Autobest Among Emerging Markets organization launched a very important new project. “It is my privilege to announce you here about a new initiative we are taking; something is coming once in a decade: THE REAL GREEN”. Since the beginning of our project we launched ECOBEST award. Now is the right time to transform the award in a new project called “ECOBEST Challenge”. We will come with a new competition designed to award the best environmental friendly cars available on AUTOBEST region. It is about real cars of today and, as you know how precise we are, about a new matrix to incorporate many different criteria to assess these green cars, from the green technologies incorporated on board to the affordability. We will have other initiatives inside The Real Green project promoting ecodriving, inviting authorities to promote real eco-cars of today and to start really doing something in terms of infrastructure for the alternative energy supply.” declared Ilja Seliktar during his inaugural speech.
“I'm very pleased to be here with you this evening to accept AUTOBEST's COMPANYBEST award on behalf of the Ford of Europe team. Winning this award means a great deal to us. We've been working hard throughout this region to develop Ford's business, finding many customers who are new to the Brand. These are very difficult times for the automotive industry… certainly the most difficult I have known in my career. But I am confident that Ford of Europe will get through this challenging period, and stronger than before. We take tonight's award as a great encouragement to us…as I'm sure do all the other deserved winners who have been recognised here by AUTOBEST.” John Fleming said receiving “COMPANYBEST 2008” award.
“My personal battle has always been to fight against the idea that one day unavoidably automobiles will become a commodity.” said Luca de Meo in front of the audience in accepting the “MANBEST 2008” award. “I’m suggesting that may be instead of fighting for the same share of wallet that might become more tiny in next years we might increase efforts trying to find the way to grow the share of wallet that people are ready to invest in our industry. I’m suggesting that the battle to fight is the battle for desirability. By the way this was exactly the attitude the pioneers of the automotive industry had at the beginning when they had to convince people those cars where better than horses, or later when they had to invent new concept to create new dreams. We need to avoid common people saying that or cars are all good, safe, performant and then they look more or less the same. This happens often in mature markets.”
"It's a great pleasure to accept the “DESIGNBEST award for 2008. We at GM are working hardly to deliver cars people like. Opel Insignia is the first example but others will come soon to prove that.” said Mark Adams.
"I feel very proud to get such an important prize and I hope in the years to come I'll be able to justify your trust in me and to be able to make you feel more honored with my future results", Nicos Thomas, the winner of SPORTBEST 2008 said.
“I am really delighted to receive this award in name of my company, Toyota Europe. We all know how important is the safety and <> is a prove that we are continuing to innovate in this field!” said Serge Gachot, Product Communications General Manager at TME.
”This is particularly important award for SEAT. Ibiza is the most important model in our range. Ecomotive is representing our strategy making cars for Real Green. We are very proud of this award and thank Autobest for recognizing our modest contribution in introducing eco friendly cars.” stated Fernando Salvador Cabos, Manager Product Communications at SEAT SA.
“TECHNOBEST 2008” award went to Skoda Auto and to receive it, during the festivity, was present Mr. Ing. Oldrich Brabec - responsible for Product Management - B class and Jana Skocdopolova, responsible for International Corporate Communication at Skoda Auto.
The AUTOBEST Jury would like to thank all the readers from the region for encouraging the project. Also, we would like to thank the PR responsible within the automotive industry for providing all the support in organizing meetings and drive tests of the new products.
For more information, please visit www.autobest.org or contact Allma Somkereki, e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
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