At a press conference yesterday hosted by the New York International Auto Show and Bridgestone Corporation, the BMW i3 was declared the 2014 World Green Car. The BMW i3 was chosen from an initial entry list of fourteen new vehicles from all over the world, then a short list of three finalists that included the winner as well as the Audi A3 Sportback g-tron and the Volkswagen XL1. Previous World Green Car winners have included; the Tesla Model S in 2013, the Mercedes-Benz S 250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY in 2012, the Chevrolet Volt in 2011, the Volkswagen BlueMotion in 2010, the Honda FCX Clarity in 2009, the BMW 118d with Efficient Dynamics in 2008, the Mercedes-Benz E320 Bluetec in 2007 and the Honda Civic Hybrid in 2006.
“To have the BMW i3 named World Green Car of the Year is a great honor,” said Dr. Ian Robertson, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Sales and Marketing BMW. “From the production process onwards, the BMW i3 is a truly sustainable vehicle, created with the needs of the 21st century city in mind."
The World Green Car award is presented by Bridgestone Corporation (Japan). Mike Martini, President, Original Equipment, U.S. & Canada Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations commented, “We are very pleased and honored to sponsor the 2014 World Green Car award. The environment is everyone’s responsibility. And throughout our global family of companies, we take this responsibility very seriously. We believe it is our mission to serve society with superior quality."
To be eligible for the 2014 World Green Car award, a vehicle had to be all-new, or substantially revised, in production and introduced for sale or lease to the public in quantities of at least 10 in at least one major market during the period beginning January 1, 2013 and ending May 31, 2014. Tailpipe emissions, fuel consumption, and use of a major advanced power plant technology (beyond engine components), aimed specifically at increasing the vehicle’s environmental responsibility, were all taken into consideration.
Due to the complexity of some of the ‘green’ technologies, five green experts were appointed by the World Car Awards Steering Committee to extensively review all documentation and specs associated with each candidate. They were asked to create a finalists’ short-list for review by the sixty-nine World Car Awards’ jurors in their second round of voting in February. The jurors’ ballots were then tabulated by the international accounting firm KPMG.
The experts commented that, “Radical in looks, construction, and powertrain, the BMW i3 is one of very few clean-sheet-of-paper cars designed from the ground up for efficiency, with the different needs of the new century’s megacities in mind. From its last-kilometer navigation system to take drivers from car to destination, to the shipped-around-the-world carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic body shell without a B-pillar, the BMW i3 pushes boundaries on many fronts”.
The five green experts are in alphabetical order: Phil Berg (USA – PopularMechanics.com); Richard Bremner (U.K. Autocar magazine), Claus-Peter Koeth (Germany – automobil-industrie.de); Yumi Kawabata (Japan-environmental journalist) and John Voelcker (USA – GreenCarReports.com).