From an initial list of 35 cars, we now have just seven, as the finalists for the 2020 European Car of the Year award have been announced. These cars were shortlisted by a jury consisting of 60 members from 23 European countries, with a final voting round set to take place next year in February before the overall winner is announced at the Geneva Motor Show.

German carmakers are represented by the latest BMW 1 Series as well as the all-electric Porsche Taycan, while French makes include the Peugeot 208 and Renault Clio. The only Japanese model in the mix is the Toyota Corolla, which is offered in three body styles and four powertrains in Europe. The Corolla’s competitor, the Mazda 3, did not make it to the final seven despite winning China Car of the Year 2020 and Thailand Car of the Year 2019.

Other finalists that made the cut are the Tesla Model 3, which has been recognised as Europe’s top-selling electric car according to a report published by JATO Dynamics. Rounding up the list is the Ford Puma, the Blue Oval’s SUV-inspired, B-segment compact crossover.

“This shortlist is representing the current development directions in the automotive business. We see electrification in progress as well as the highest standard in internal combustion engines. Electric vehicles are represented by the Porsche Taycan as well as by the Tesla Model 3, but also making their way into mass market as shown by the Peugeot 208 that will be available as an electric version,” said Frank Janssen, president of the Euroepan Car of the Year jury.

“Hybrids that use regenerative braking are getting more and more common to reduce fuel consumption and emissions. Not only by Toyota who invented this technology but also by Ford and Renault. The BMW 1 Series underlines that internal combustion engine technology still has a huge potential,” he added.