COTY’s gala night

Industry gathers to celebrate as Mazda MX-5 is declared 2016 Wheels Car of the Year

BARRY PARK

MORE than 200 of the Australian car industry’s elite watched as the Mazda MX-5 roadster was crowned the 2016 Wheels Car of the Year on January 20.

The gala Crown Casino event, which attracted chief executives, marketing managers and even senior engineers from more than 30 leading car brands, also incorporated presentations for Motor Performance Car of the Year (Porsche 911 GT3), 4X4 Australia 4x4 of the Year (Ford Everest Trend), and the WhichCar Style Award (Alfa Romeo 4C).

It capped off months of planning, testing and analysis that made up the inaugural Australian Motoring Awards.

The event was hosted by TV personality and sports presenter Mark Beretta, and included a guest appearance by Porsche factory driver and newly crowned 2015 World Endurance Champion Mark Webber.

Mazda’s win in the 2016 Wheels Car of the Year was the third time the iconic MX-5 sports car had earned Australia’s top motoring award for excellence.

The Mazda finished ahead of the new-generation Audi Q7 and the car described as Jaguar’s best effort yet, the BMW 3 Seriesfighting Jaguar XE, to snare the coveted title.