Currently reading: Volkswagen ID Buzz wins What Car? Car of the Year
Electric MPV stood out for being good to drive, practical and great value for money on finance

The Volkswagen ID Buzz has been crowned What Car? Car of the Year 2023.

Its victory as the best new car to be launched in the past 12 months was announced at a glittering ceremony, dubbed the ‘Motoring Oscars’, at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House in London, with the awards held in association with MotorEasy.

The ID Buzz – which invokes the looks of the iconic VW Type 2 camper van of the 1950s, 60s and 70s, but is actually a cutting-edge electric car – was also crowned Best Large Electric Car and stood out for combining the practicality of an MPV with the comfort and desirability of a luxury SUV, while undercutting rivals such as the BMW iX3, Jaguar I-Pace and Mercedes-Benz EQC.

Adding to its appeal, the ID Buzz has an official all-electric range of 260 miles and can charge from 10-80% in less than half an hour. It offers a commanding raised driving position, superb visibility, is extremely quiet and has space to take three children or adults in the back, as well as having an enormous boot.

What Car? editor Steve Huntingford, said: “The ID Buzz has been eagerly anticipated because of its nostalgic styling, but all of our judges were blown away by the fact it didn’t just live up to expectations but, in fact, was even better than the hype.

“It’s great to drive, wonderful to be in, has more space than most families could ever ask for and – thanks in part to incredible predicted resale value – substantially undercuts many SUV rivals on a monthly finance deal. This is a car that wins over your head as well as your heart and one that will bring huge amounts of joy to lucky buyers at a time when the costs and challenges of motoring are under greater pressure than ever.”

Dr. Lars Krause, Board Member for Sales and Marketing of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: “The ID Buzz is the reincarnation of an icon and we are thrilled that the experts at What Car? magazine share the enthusiasm of our fans and customers, and have given it the honour of their Car of the Year award. “The UK is one of our most important markets, and customers here expect the best. We will continue to do all we can to build great cars for you, to develop icons of the future and to ensure the next successful chapter in our brand’s history.”

 Range rover sport 2023 front quarter tracking

Other big winners on the night included Land Rover, whose big-selling Range Rover Sport was hailed the Best Luxury Car. At the other end of the scale, celebrated British brand MG – now under Chinese ownership – won Best Small Electric Car for its MG4 EV, a car that’s much cheaper than rivals from more established European brands.

The Tesla Model 3 was also honoured, dethroning the BMW 3 Series as Best Executive Car after the German marque had won the category for the past four years. Significantly, it also marks the first time that an electric car has won the category.

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However, BMW did enjoy huge success on the night, taking three category wins for the Best Coupé (4 Series), Best Convertible (4 Series Convertible) and the Technology Award (BMW i7). That placed it first equal with Volkswagen, which won with the ID Buzz (Car of the Year, and Best Large Electric Car) and Volkswagen T-Roc (Best Small SUV), and Tesla (Executive Car, Efficiency Award and Safety Award) in the manufacturer rankings, with three overall wins apiece.

Another notable winner was the Genesis GV60, which won the Best Electric SUV category. Genesis was launched in the UK in 2021 as an alternative to established premium brands such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, and is part of Hyundai Motor Company.

What Car? Car of the Year Awards 2023 in association with MotorEasy:


Car of the Year: Volkswagen ID Buzz Style


Small car: Honda Jazz 1.5 i-MMD Hybrid SR

Family car - sponsored by NOCO: Honda Civic 2.0 e:HEV Sport

Hot hatch: Hyundai i20N

Small SUV - sponsored by Solera cap hpi: Volkswagen T-Roc 1.0 TSI 110 Life

Family SUV - sponsored by MotorEasy: Kia Sportage 1.6 Turbocharged Petrol 3

Seven Seater - sponsored by Hyundai Santa Fe 4WD Premium

Executive car: Tesla Model 3 RWD

Luxury car: Range Rover Sport P440e Dynamic SE

Hybrid (plug-in) - sponsored by myenergi: Lexus NX 450h Premium Pack

Small electric car - sponsored by myenergi: MG4 EV SE

Large electric car - sponsored by myenergi: Volkswagen ID Buzz Style

Estate: Skoda Superb Estate 1.5 TSI 150 SE L

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Coupé: BMW 4 Series 420i M Sport (M Sport Pro Package)

Electric SUV - sponsored by myenergi: Genesis GV60 RWD Premium

Convertible: BMW 4 Series Convertible 420i M Sport (M Sport Pro Package)

Sports car: Porsche Cayman 4.0 GTS

Sports SUV: Ford Puma ST 1.5 Ecoboost 200 Performance Pack

Performance car: Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo 4S 


Reader Award: Kia EV9

Tow Car Award: Audi Q5 40 TDI quattro Sport 

Reliability Award - sponsored by MotorEasy: Lexus

Technology Award - sponsored by Goodwood: BMW i7

Efficiency Award: Tesla Model 3 RWD 

Safety Award - sponsored by Thatcham Research: Tesla Model Y

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gavsmit 20 January 2023

I've collected What Car magazine since I was a kid in the eighties, but stopped buying it last year after almost 40 years because the magazine is now awful.

Inaccurate information, terrible writing, nonsensical and biased views / verdicts, people that don't have a clue about cars masquerading as motoring journalists and even recycled reviews - I read a group test of new cars one year, then read the same group test with the same pictures a year later as a 'used car' group test!

"Great value for money on finance" what absolute rubbish, this is a grossly overpriced vehicle whether bought outright or rented on finance. I wonder how much VW pay for advertising in that magazine?

ianp55 20 January 2023

If it's great value to lease but by any other standard it's extremely expensive even by VW standards

Dozza 20 January 2023

Laughing out loud. £58-63K is hardly great value now is it? What Car has become 'What Electric Car?'