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European Car of the Year 2017 shortlist announced

Auto Express logo Auto Express 29/11/2016 Tom Wiltshire
Toyota C-HR - front action © Provided by Auto Express Toyota C-HR - front action

What have the Alfa Romeo Giulia, Nissan Micra and Toyota C-HR got in common?

They’re all on the shortlist for the prestigious 2017 European Car of the Year award, joined by four other offerings from Volvo, Citroen, Peugeot and Mercedes.

The winner will be decided by a team of 58 European judges, taking in factors like design, comfort, safety, performance, and driver satisfaction. Judges have 25 points to award across at least five of the seven cars, making for a balanced shortlist.

Despite the name of the award, it's not just cars produced in Europe that are eligible to win the title - as long as a car is sold in more than five European countries, it's in with a shot.

The other nominees are the new Peugeot 3008, which we’ve been impressed by in recent reviews, the classy and good-looking Volvo S90 (and its V90 estate sibling), the interesting Citroen C3, and the tech-laden Mercedes E-Class.

Out of this crowd, there are some interesting choices. Volvo is the only brand represented to never have won the title before, but the S90 has scored very well indeed in Auto Express reviews. The new Micra is a breath of fresh air after its stodgy and staid previous-generation model - it's also one of just two cars in the shortlist not from a European country.

These candidates join a massive portfolio of past nominees, and previous winners include legends like the NSE Ro 80, Lancia Delta, and Ford Focus. Should the Nissan Micra win, it will be the second time that the same nameplate has won twice - the first being the Renault Clio with its wins in 1991 and 2006.

The final winner of the coveted title will be announced at next year's Geneva Motor Show on the 6th of March.

European Car of the Year - Past winners

2016: Vauxhall/Opel Astra 2015: Volkswagen Passat 2014: Peugeot 308

2013: Volkswagen Golf 2012: Vauxhall/Opel Ampera 2011: Nissan Leaf 2010: Volkswagen Polo

2009: Vauxhall/Opel Insignia 2008: Fiat 500 2007: Ford S-MAX

2006: Renault Clio 2005: Toyota Prius 2004: Fiat Panda

2003: Renault Megane 2002: Peugeot 307 2001: Alfa Romeo 147 2000: Toyota Yaris

New Nissan Micra - front © Auto Express New Nissan Micra - front

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