THE AUSTRALIAN automotive industry’s best and brightest assembled at Melbourne’s Forum Theatre last month for the 2018 Australian Motoring Awards (AMAs).
The AMAs is an annual event that awards the best in the industry, as voted by expert judges from the respective brands: Wheels Car of the Year, MOTOR Performance Car of the Year, WhichCar Style Award, and the big one, 4X4 Australia 4X4OTY.
Shane Jacobson, a self-confessed petrol-head, steered proceedings and wooed the 200-strong crowd in attendance with his charm and wit. While Wheels’ esteemed journo Peter Robinson hosted an insightful Q&A with Paul Beranger, the former head of Toyota Style Australia.
In the end, the new-from-the-ground-up Discovery won the prestigious 2018 4X4 of the Year gong, in SD4 guise, with Tim Krieger accepting the trophy on behalf of Land Rover.
Judges independently scored each vehicle against a set list of criteria: value for money, breaking new ground, built tough, bushability and doing the job it’s designed to do. After the votes were cast and tallied, the SD4 narrowly clinched victory ahead of the Isuzu MU-X by two points.
“The SD4 moves the 4x4 wagon design goalposts in terms of weight versus size and engine capacity versus performance,” Fraser Stronach, a judge at 4X4OTY, said. “It works brilliantly on-road yet isn’t fazed by a gnarly track.”
Why the SD4 and not the TD6? The TD6 asks for an extra $7K, but the extra cylinders don’t push it a hell of a lot harder than the SD4. Also, if you want the V6 with a coil-spring set-up, you can’t get the rear locker.
Head to 4X4Australia.com.au for a comprehensive run-down of the 2018 4X4OTY.
The Land Rover Discovery SD4 is unveiled as the2018 4X4OTY, at the Australian Motoring Awards.