December 12, 2003

Winners of the 2004 Automobile Magazine Awards announced

New York, New York – The winners of the 2004 Automobile Magazine awards were announced on Thursday. The awards recognize the most significant automobile, man, design, technology, and racing car of the year.

Here are this year’s winners followed by the editor’s comments:

2004 Automobile of the Year: Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

“Though the Mazda RX-8, the Cadillac CTS V, the Porsche 911 GT3, and the Audi A8L came close, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution won over the editorial staff with its speed, its spacious and comfortable cockpit, and its affordable price (about U.S.$30,000). The Evolution also has a great sense of control and is one of the best performance cars on the market.”

2004 Man of the Year: Martin Leach

“In the wake of his departure from Ford of Europe, Martin Leach receives this year’s Man of the Year award, a sign that Ford’s loss could be someone else’s gain. After his 24 years with Ford and Mazda, Leach has a well-earned reputation as a car nut, one of the very few visionaries of the trade, an excellent engineer and driver, a pragmatic team player, and a genuinely nice guy.”

2004 Design of the Year: Toyota Prius

“Toyota’s Prius is turning heads as the first hybrid to hit the market that appeals to both the eye and the economy. This second-generation Prius’s dramatically new interior and exterior design has earned it the title of 2004 Design of the Year, marking Toyota’s hybrid as one of the all-around best-looking vehicles on the road.”

2004 Technology of the Year: BMW Active Steering

“The editors feel that the joint venture among Bosch, ZF, and BMW chassis experts has created the most important development of the year in automobile handling: BMW Active Steering. An integral part of the 2004 BMW 5-series, Active Steering is a revolutionary new way to improve agility, enhance stability, and help with rapid countersteering corrections.”

2004 Racing Car of the Year: Williams FW25-BMW

“With an engine that weighs less than 200 pounds and pushes out more than 900 horsepower, the Williams FW25-BMW was chosen as Racing Car of the Year. By establishing a closer relationship with BMW and Michelin, Williams demonstrates that integration is a key to success in racing.”

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