The Vauxhall Insignia has won a narrow victory in the 2009 Car of the Year competition organised by Autocar.
Considering that there was a 59-strong jury of senior motoring journalists drawn from 23 European countries, the triumph was no mean achievement.
Members of the jury included writers from the Sunday Times, the Daily Telegraph and Top Gear magazine.
In second place was the Ford Fiesta, beaten by just a single point. The Volkwsagen Golf finished in the bronze medal position.
"This is the closest Car of the Year competition for years," commented an excited Ray Hutton, president of the jury which made the decision.
Car of the Year has often been decided narrowly, but it is eight years since another Ford, the Mondeo, was beaten by a single point by Alfa Romeos 147."
Last year the Fiat 500 scooped the award and the year before it was the turn of the Ford S-Max.
The Insignia’s win should see used-Vauxhall dealers becoming even more busy than they are now.
Written by Bobby Minter