NEW YORK: Jaguar's electric I-Pace has been named the best car of 2019, winning the British luxury brand the top prize in three categories of the influential World Car Awards at the New York car show.
Alongside the 2019 world Car of the Year, the electric SUV also took home accolades in the design and "Green Car" categories.
The organisers and jury, comprised automotive journalists from all over the world, lauded the I-Pace for its "sports car performance, exceptional refinement and true SUV practicality."
The electric SUV, known for a massive range of up to 470km from its 90-kWh lithium-ion battery, can charge 80% in 40 minutes at a fast-charging station and be recharged overnight using a normal socket.
This year marks the third year straight in which an SUV has come out on top, with Volvo's XC40 luxury crossover winning in 2018 after the Peugeot 3008 in 2017.
Jaguar CEO Ralf Speth said the I-Pace marked a step towards what he called "zero emissions, zero accidents and zero congestion."
"We started with an ideal, to move towards our Destination Zero vision. [...] I-Pace is our first step to achieving this, and it was conceived when EVs [electric vehicles] were little more than a niche choice."
Meanwhile the 2019 luxury car prize went to the Audi A7, best urban car to the Suzuki Jimny and best car performance to the McLaren 720s.
Among the seven finalists for the Car of the Year 2019 were both more affordable models by Kia (Ceed) and Ford (Focus), alongside releases by luxury brands Mercedes (A-Class) and Jaguar.
Renault-owned sports car manufacturer Alpine also made its way onto the list with its A110 model, alongside fellow French models the Peugeot 508 and Citreon C5 Aircross.
Among the most important aspects for the judges - who are a group of journalists and car experts from across Europe - is the technical innovation and value for money displayed by each entry.
According to its website, the award values "design, comfort, safety, economy, handling, performance, functionality, environmental requirements, driver satisfaction and price."
World Car of the Year - Full award list
2019 World Car of the Year: Jaguar I-Pace
2019 World Urban Car: Suzuki Jimny
2019 World Luxury Car: Audi A7
2019 World Performance Car: McLaren 720S
2019 World Green Car: Jaguar I-Pace
2019 World Car Design of the Year: Jaguar I-Pace
2019 World Car Person of the Year: Sergio Marchionne (Fiat, Chrysler)