Nissan Picks Up 2011 COTY Trophy for Leaf

Now, before someone adds a comment of the sort "in other related news, Audi unveiled the new A6", let us make it clear that we're not reporting on the actual Car of the Year (COTY) 2011 results, which were announced in late November 2010, but on the special ceremony that took place at the Pavillion Gabriel in Paris earlier this week to hand over the trophy to this year's winner, the new Nissan Leaf.

The trophy was received by Nissan Motor Co.'s President and CEO Carlos Ghosn, who of course, was extremely happy with the results.

"It is a great honor for Nissan LEAF to be recognized as the European Car of the Year - the first all-electric car to receive this distinction, " said Mr. Ghosn. "Like previous Car of the Year winners, Nissan LEAF is an appealing, competitive car, with no compromise on style, features, safety, performance or handling. Yet it stands apart as an innovative car that reflects a clear vision of the future of transportation - a vision of sustainable mobility."

Speaking at the ceremony Håkan Matson, president of the CoTY jury said: "I am convinced that we will see other electric cars named Car of the Year in the future. But when we do, we must always remember that only one can be the first. And that is why Nissan LEAF Car of the Year 2011 is - and will remain - so very special," said Håkan Matson, president of the CoTY jury, speaking at the ceremony.

You can view the results in detail here, but we'll remind you that the 58 jury members from 23 European countries placed the all-electric Nissan Leaf in first place with 257 points, followed by the Alfa Romeo Giulietta with 248 points and the Opel Meriva small MPV with 244 points. This is the second time Nissan has won the COTY, the first being in 1993 with the Micra, which became the first ever Japanese model to win the accolade.