The Straits Times Car of the Year 2021: Readers pick Tesla Model 3 Performance

The Tesla Model 3 Performance clinched 40.5 per cent of the votes. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR

SINGAPORE - Readers of The Straits Times seem to favour electric cars, going by results of a traditional fun poll which precedes the annual ST Car of the Year awards.

Out of 7,761 responses to an online poll titled "Which car do you think should be crowned The Straits Times Car of the Year 2021?", 79.6 per cent voted for the four electric cars in the 10-car line-up.

The Tesla Model 3 Performance, a 377kW electric compact saloon, clinched 40.5 per cent of the votes - followed by the MG 5 electric station wagon (17.4 per cent) and the Audi e-tron GT electric grand tourer (16.6 per cent).

Rounding up the top five were the Cupra Formentor (13 per cent), a petrol-powered performance sport utility vehicle (SUV) and another electric car - the BMW iX3 SUV (5 per cent).

The remaining cars garnered between 2.6 and 0.7 per cent of votes. They were, in descending order, the Honda Jazz, the Peugeot 2008, the Renault Arkana Fastback, the Volkswagen Golf and the Hyundai Tucson Hybrid. Of these, only the Peugeot and the Volkswagen relied solely on combustion engines.

In 2020, 8,702 were cast. Like in previous years, results of the readers' poll did not influence the judges' decision. The ST Car of the Year is selected via a stringent multi-step process involving proposals, arguments and a scoring system which weighs nine traits of each nominee against its peers.

This year's readers' favourite is a newcomer, having arrived here officially only in February. The Tesla Model 3 Performance is a sedate-looking, dual-motor four-door with phenomenal performance. With 660Nm of near-instant torque going to all four wheels, it hits 100kmh in a blinding 3.3 seconds and a top speed of 261kmh.

Along with its less powerful twin, the Model 3 Standard Range, it has made Tesla the best-selling electric brand in Singapore in just a few months after deliveries started in July.

Judge Lionel Seah, a 64-year-old freelance writer, says: "The Model 3 is a standout high-tech electric vehicle for its Apple-like user experience and Marie Kondo-like cabin simplicity.

"It is refined and comfortable, and far more engaging to drive than most others."

Number of votes each car got

1. Tesla Model 3 Performance: 3,147

2. MG 5: 1,347

3. Audi e-tron GT: 1,285

4. Cupra Formentor: 1,005

5. BMW iX3: 402

6. Honda Jazz: 201

7. Peugeot 2008: 126

8. Renault Arkana Fastback: 103

9. Volkswagen Golf: 90

10. Hyundai Tucson Hybrid: 55

Total votes cast: 7,761

Remote video URL

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.