The victory of the Volkswagen Golf in 2013 car of the year doesn't surprise anyone. The acceptance speech by Ulrich Hackenberg at the announcement press conference before the Geneva motor show was also notably short and low key.
Still, this was a vote entirely in line with the award's precepts - the Golf is excellent, it shows the future (especially in some of its more frugal versions) and it attacks things like weight loss and right-sizing, while introducing a new form of 'family' manufacture many will envy
For me it was second to the Toyobaru, only because it's more than 20 years since someone built a pure driver's car. The last was the Mazda MX-5 and that was far less practical.