|IONIQ 5 won the Import Car of the Year award in Japan, Friday. / Courtesy of Hyundai Motor|
By Kim Jae-heun
Hyundai Motor's all-electric IONIQ 5 car won the Import Car of the Year award in Japan, the carmaker said Friday. This is the first time for the Car of the Year Japan Executive Committee to award a Korean car.
Since 1980, the Car of the Year Japan award has been given to the 10 best cars every year among vehicles newly launched in the country. The committee picks the car of the year by category following a test drive evaluation and a run-off vote.
The IONIQ 5 was selected as the winner after beating the BMW iX, Land Rover Range Rover and Renault Arkana, which all ranked in the top 10.
"In addition to its innovative interior and exterior design, long one-time charging mileage, its dynamic driving performance and various conveniences and safety specifications were highly evaluated," the Car of the Year Japan Executive Committee said. "In particular, there were many opinions that the function of changing the regenerative braking stage with a paddle shift mounted on the steering wheel also provides a comfortable driving experience."
The IONIQ 5 is the first electric car developed based on Hyundai Motor's E-GMP electric vehicle platform. In April, the electric vehicle was selected as the World Car of the Year at the 2022 World Car Awards, and in October it was the first electric vehicle to win the U.S. car magazine MotorTrend's 2023 SUV of the Year.
"The IONIQ 5 has been highly evaluated amid great interest from Japanese consumers since the launch of the electric vehicle's sales. We will continue contributing to the future of mobility in the Japanese market with sincerity and humility," Hyundai Mobility Japan President Cho Won-sang said.