• Shortlist of 12 cars revealed for the award
  • Results to be announced as part of the 40th annual What Car? Car of the Year Awards.
  • Votes can be cast at What Car Reader Award

Voting for the What Car? Reader Award is now officially open to the public, as motorists are invited to name the car they believe will be the most exciting new car of 2017.

The results from the public vote will be announced at the 40th annual What Car? Car of the Year Awards ceremony in London, on 11 January 2017 at Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane.

Shortlisted for the prestigious award this year are 12 cars, all vying to follow in the footsteps of the Alfa Romeo Giulia, which scooped last year’s accolade.

The annual What Car? awards are the most established honours for both manufacturers and the public, with the Reader Award in particular providing a valuable indication of consumer reaction to upcoming vehicles.

Shortlisted by What Car?’s team of experts, the 12 contenders for the 2017 award are the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Audi Q5, Honda Civic Type R, Ford Fiesta, Jaguar I-Pace, Land Rover Discovery, Lexus LC 500, Mini Countryman, Peugeot 5008, Seat Arona, Tesla Model 3 and the Vauxhall Insignia.

What Car? editor, Steve Huntingford, commented: “It’s great to see so many exciting new car models entering the automotive world over the next 12 months. With outstanding prices and offerings available, it’s a real boost to the industry and certainly a great time to be buying a car.

“This year, we’re celebrating the 40th year of our awards and we’re continually pleased with the positive response. The Reader Award in particular holds a special place for all manufacturers, because it’s voted on by the public and provides an early indication of what success is likely to come from the upcoming car releases.

“Looking at the manufacturers and models shortlisted this year, it’s going to be a close call as to who wins the award.”

To see the full shortlist of cars that can be voted for, visit: What Car Reader Award

Full Reader Award shortlist:

 Alfa Romeo Stelvio


Alfa Romeo’s first ever SUV will be a rival for the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Jaguar F-Pace. Expect a style-focused model that’s still practical enough for family life.

Audi Q5

Audi Q5

The new Audi Q5 might look similar to the original, but it’s actually got more in common with our 2016 Car of the Year, the A4 saloon. The Q5 is comfortable, classy inside and offers good performance, too.

Ford Fiesta

Reader Test team Ford Fiesta STUsed on the web onlyAugust 2012

Ford’s Fiesta hatchback is the best-selling car in the UK. This all-new version is likely to offer more grown-up looks and extra space and equipment, but the same fun drive.

Honda Civic Type R

New Civic Type R Prototype breaks cover in Paris

So far, this hot version of the latest Civic hatchback has only been shown in concept form, but expect the finished car to have the same wild looks, and around 350bhp.

Jaguar I-Pace

HyperFocal: 0

The I-Pace SUV will be Jaguar’s first electric car. Smaller and sleeker than the conventionally-powered F-Pace, the I-Pace is designed to combine vivid performance with a range of over 310 miles between charges.

Lexus LC 500


The LC 500 is Lexus’s new flagship performance model, and a successor to the LFA supercar. It’s a four-seat sports coupé and will be offered with both petrol and hybrid power.

Land Rover Discovery


Like today’s Land Rover Discovery, the new one is hugely practical, with space for seven adults. However, efficiency is much improved, while interior quality is now worthy of a Range Rover.

Mini Countryman


This new version of Mini’s Countryman SUV is both classier and more practical than the original. Plus, it will be available as a plug-in hybrid capable of around 25 miles on electric power.

Peugeot 5008


The MPV market is shrinking, so the new Peugeot 5008 combines the practicality of these seven-seat people carriers with the stylish, go-anywhere looks of an SUV.

Seat Arona


Seat’s first SUV, the Ateca, was so good that it knocked the Nissan Qashqai off top spot in the class, and now with the Arona, Seat is gunning for the smaller Juke.

Tesla Model 3


The Model 3 will be electric brand Tesla’s most affordable car yet. A rival to the BMW 3 Series, it can accelerate from 0-60mph in less than six seconds, and cover up to 250 miles on one charge.

Vauxhall Insignia

Volkswagen Studie C Coup GTE

Vauxhall is on a bit of a roll at the moment, and the new Insignia executive car looks set to continue it, combining efficient engines and a practical interior with sleek looks inspired by the Monza concept car.

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