Two well-established brands with badge cache face some stiff competition from an upstart challenger.
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Drive Car of the Year 2021 - Best Medium Luxury Car


It must be daunting launching an all-new brand into a segment that has long been dominated by European carmakers. But the Genesis G70 was up for the fight, challenging the established Europeans in a segment long dominated by the Big Three – BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz.

It speaks to the quality of the Genesis G70 that Mercedes’ perennial favourite C-Class sedan didn’t make the list of finalists this year, the Korean luxury sedan bumping it out of the top three. That left BMW’s benchmark 3 Series and Audi’s sleek and stylish A5 Sportback to vie for honours in the segment against the upstart from Genesis.

All three contenders would have made a worthy winner, blending that feeling of luxury buyers in the segment expect with performance, handling dynamics and premium cabin appointments befitting a prestige car.

And the Winner is...

BMW 3 Series

The BMW 3 Series has again shown why it is the benchmark by which all others are judged.

While the buying public is drifting away from sedans of all shapes and sizes, gravitating towards SUVs and dual-cab utes, the premium mid-size sedan segment continues to be the flagbearer for luxury brands like the three finalists from BMW, Audi, and now Genesis.

Picking a winner was no easy task, each car having its strengths and weaknesses. Audi’s A5 Sportback made a compelling case, as did the upstart Genesis, but ultimately, it was hard to past the BMW 3 Series as a complete package, with its blend of driver engagement, luxurious interior and yes, brand cache. And in this segment, brand cache matters.

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