Last year we asked you to name your favourite cars – from superminis to supercars, we wanted to know what you really rated. We also asked the readers of 17 of our sister magazines across Europe. Just under 300,000 people responded, and the results make for interesting reading.Not surprisingly, there was plenty of patriotism – good news for the ever-declining British car industry – but there were some pretty unusual results, too.
The new British-built Mini was the favourite city slicker everywhere apart from Italy, where the home-grown Fiat Panda won the day. It appears it's not just us at Autocar who like the new Suzuki Swift either – it came a very close second.
We like the new Corsa, and so do you – it easily won, getting top votes from most countries. But the French preferred the Peugeot 207 and Renault Clio, and the Italians the Fiat Punto.
Small family hatches
We Brits voted the Swindon-made Honda Civic as top hatch, but slightly bafflingly the Audi A3 won overall across Europe. The Focus and Astra were nowhere to be seen.
Medium family car
If there's such a thing as a sure thing, the BMW 3-series is it. It easily got the most votes in this category, putting it ahead of the Lexus IS and Alfa 159. Unless you're French, of course, in which case the Peugeot 407 came top.
Large family car
BMW's got this one wrapped up as well, with a clear victory for the 5-series, ahead of the Audi A6 and Mercedes CLS. Curiously, however, the Germans much preferred the A6.
If you asked most Autocar staffers to name their favourite luxury car, it'd probably be a toss-up between the Merc S-class, Rolls-Royce Phantom and Range Rover. Being a 4x4, the Rangie didn’t fall into this category, and so couldn't win, but we're pretty surprised that no one, from Finland to Greece, voted for the Phantom as number one. Even in Britain the Phantom only managed to be second-favourite, just ahead of the S-class. Our favourite? The Maserati Quattroporte, which also tied for first across Europe with the Audi A8.
We didn't make up the categories here, so we can't really explain why this one covers everything from the Micra C+C to the Lambo Murcielago roadster. It's not much of a surprise, therefore, to learn that the rather wonderful Ferrari F430 Spider came top overall We Brits liked the Lamborghini Gallardo drop-top best, just ahead of the Mercedes SL and the Aston Martin DB9.
Start playing some Elgar, because we Brits voted the Aston V8 Vantage best sports car, and the DB9 second-best. Even our third favourite, the Mercedes SLR SLR, is built in Blighty. Inevitably, however, we must bow to the unnatural force that is the Porsche 911, which won overall across Europe by a huge margin.
More Elgar, please. And perhaps some steak-and-kidney pudding. In order, we rated the Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, and Land Rover Discovery as top of the mud-pluggers. Unfortunatley, however, our European friends were less discerning, voting the mammoth Audi Q7 best overall, followed by the BMW X5. And we thought this category was off-roaders…
Last but not by any means least, it's the MPVs, and the Ford S-Max can add to its Car of the Year gong with a victory in our poll, beating the Renault Espace and the Mercedes B-class. The Fiat Doblo never stood a chance.