The 2014 South African Car of the Year finalists were announced on Saturday afternoon during a reveal event at the Johannesburg International Motor Show.
The nine finalists in the annual competition, sponsored by WesBank and conducted by the SA Guild of Motoring Journalistswere chosen by a 30-member jury, selected by their peers, from a list of 40 semi-finalists.
In alphabetical order, they are:
The next step in the process will be a stringent two-day evaluation session to be held in Gauteng in January 2014.
The testing procedures at the Gerotek vehicle test facility near Pretoria will allow the jury members to assess the cars independently under the conditions in individual vehicles would be expected to perform, with routes and modules designed to test the vehicles in a similar way to how the average owner would use them.
The evaluation days offer the jury the opportunity to address specific aspects of these nine cars such as aesthetics, build quality, ergonomics, fuel consumption, environmental friendliness, safety features and value for money, to name but a few.
They'll also have access to independent performance test data, comparative pricing and specification data as well as comparative parts pricing data, compiled by Malcolm Kinsey.
All these cars represent examples of outstanding automotive engineering, but there can be only one winner and, in the eyes for the jury, that car must epitomise all-round automotive excellence - the sole criterion for Car of the Year.
The winner of the 2014 SA Car the Year will be revealed at a gala banquet in February 2014.