Toyota iQ wins 2008 Japan Car of the Year award

The revolutionary Toyota iQ, the world’s smallest four-seater passenger car, has won the 2008 Japan Car of the Year award by a large margin over rivals. The innovative iQ scored more than double the points of the second placed, receiving top marks from 39 of the 65 jurors who voted.

The judges praised the iQ for its space efficiency and design, particularly the iQ’s capacity for seating four people within a body less than three metres long, as well as its combination of high levels of safety and low CO2 emissions.

At the other end of the performance scale, the Nissan GT-R came third with 201 points (compared to the iQ with 526 points).

The new Toyota iQ goes on sale in the UK from 6 January 2009, but is available to order now, with prices starting from £9,495 for the iQ 1.0 VVT-i manual.

The 1.0-litre VVT-i engine with manual transmission is set to return 65.7mpg and 99g/km CO2, so making it exempt from road tax.

Standard safety features include ABS, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) and Vehicle Stability Control with steering assist (VSC+) and Traction Control (TRC). It has nine airbags as standard, including a world-first rear window airbag.

The iQ is equipped with 15-inch alloys, heated electrically adjustable door mirrors, air conditioning and six speaker audio system with auxiliary socket.

The iQ2 is fitted with high-gloss alloys, front fog lamps, automatic headlights and rain sensing wipers, smart entry and start system and climate control.