• Nov 11th 2008 at 4:29PM
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Click above for high-res gallery of the Nissan GT-R

Nissan has hit a major home run with its latest Skyline, known as the GT-R here in the States. In fact, the car was knocked so far out of the park that it seems an obvious choice for anyone's Car of the Year. Nissan's latest supercar boasts enough performance to take on the best from the rest of the world regardless of price, making it an amazing value despite costing upwards of $80,000. As such, the new GT-R has been awarded the Car of the Year trophy from Automobile Mag. Who are we to argue?

Other winners of Automobile's year-end awards include Audi's stunning A5 coupe, which takes the award for Design of the Year, though it seems it feels like the A5's already been around for more than a year. Man of the Year goes to Honda's CEO, Takeo Fuki, who's company is now reaping the rewards for staying true to its initial vision of rational, fuel efficient designs after all these years. It's pretty hard to take exception with these choices, though 2009, which is right around the corner, is shaping up to be the year of fuel efficiency. Follow the jump for Automobile Mag's official press release, which has a few extra award winners we didn't mention.

[Source: Automobile]


AUTOMOBILE Magazine Names the Nissan GT-R Automobile of the Year

ANN ARBOR, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- AUTOMOBILE Magazine, America's leading automotive lifestyle publication and part of Source Interlink Media, LLC, a subsidiary of media and marketing services company Source Interlink Companies, Inc. (NASDAQ:SORC), announced today that the Nissan GT-R is the 2009 Automobile of the Year. The magazine also named the Audi A5 Design of the Year, Honda president and CEO Takeo Fukui Man of the Year, and Direct Fuel Injection Technology of the Year.
The winners are featured in the pages of the January 2009 issue of AUTOMOBILE Magazine, available on newsstands beginning December 2, 2008.

2009 Automobile of the Year: Nissan GT-R

The much anticipated Nissan GT-R is the first Japanese supercar to seriously threaten the reigning opposition, many of whom the GT-R bested on Germany's renowned Nurburgring. Editors noted that while the Nissan GT-R rides like a subway car, sounds like an appliance and weighs a ton, it still deserved to be named Automobile of the Year for delivering high-intensity fun and astonishing performance.

'For decades, previous versions of the GT-R were never exported to the United States. Now we know what we've been missing, and are we happy to be invited to the party,' said Jean Jennings, president and editor-in-chief of AUTOMOBILE Magazine. 'What we love about the GT-R is that it refuses to compromise. It is not comfortable, it is not trying to make friends and it is not trying to influence people. It exists for one reason only ' to go fast ' and it does.'

In awarding the GT-R its ultimate prize, AUTOMOBILE Magazine editors cited the car's 'neck-snapping acceleration,' 'super-accurate steering' and 'incredible value' by supercar standards.

Design of the Year: Audi A5

AUTOMOBILE Magazine's Design of the Year is notable for its restraint, elegance, and perfect execution on the interior and not just the exterior, according to editors. Initially, the editors were skeptical of Volkswagen Group design chief Walter de Silva's assertion that the Audi A5 is his best-ever design. It was on seeing the A5 on the road, however, that the magazine's editors could fully appreciate the quality of the A5's total design. Audi has indeed created a beautiful car.

'The first point of appreciation comes upon approaching the car,' said Design Editor Robert Cumberford. 'The second comes when the door is opened to one of the best interiors offered today, in any car at any price. The A5's elegance, stability, and sheer visual presence make it a clear winner.'

Man of the Year: Takeo Fukui - President, Honda Motor Company

In a year when the U.S. auto market has been challenged by fuel prices and the financial meltdown, Honda stands as an exception. With Takeo Fukui at the reins, Honda maintained a diverse model mix, especially in the small-car arena, and successfully positioned itself for the current marketplace.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I just love how everyone who dislikes the GT-R automatically has to be a fanboy of some other brand. I like the ZR1 because of what it can do without being as compromising and swindling as the GT-R.

      If you don't like the ZR1 then fine, why doesn't the Fit win Car of the Year. It is by far the best driving experience you will get for that kind of money, plus you will save some gas doing it.

      Some of you really need to grow up with these fanboy accusation issues. Sometimes people can disagree with car magazines, ever think of that.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I personally think that it is un-American to purchase and drive any auto other than one of the big three.
      No wonder we are in the fix that we are.
      WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!!!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      When I was at the autoshow this weekend, they had a RHD GT-R there. Absolutely beautiful... I must have looked at it for 20 minutes.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The media and their obsession with imports. Blah.
      I'll take my old cutlass over a datsun any day
      • 6 Years Ago
      Bad choice. The car should be disqualified just for it's looks alone. I guess they judged a black car on a moonless night. We live in an age of truly ugly machines. Please someone save us from this trend!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Honda is reaping the rewards of trying to be fuel efficient while simultaneously prepping a V8 for the US market?

      So which is it?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Oh. Is that why the RDX gets 17/22? Cause it's so damn efficient?

        If they are playing the field, why does Honda deserve kudos for merely playing the field the same as everyone else? They don't even lead in their two big segments (Civic and Accord).
        • 6 Years Ago
        Ever heard of diversity? Any large scale automaker that has a diverse product line will have its ass covered whichever direction the wind blows. The well-to-do and the image conscious have little concern towards fuel economy. Rest assured when Honda sets out to build any engine, it will be efficient... that is what the Honda brand is all about (which is why their F1 program pains them, see cost per point earned blog entry for the other day).
        • 6 Years Ago
        I have to agree on this one with LS7. People were lauging at honda, or were rather confused, because they didn't offer a V8 in their flagship RL and SUVs. And this diversity theory was exactly as valid today as it was 10 or 20 or 100 years ago. But now they decide to go big, while everybody else is scaling back in panic. Maybe it is just that honda spent o much money indeveloping that it is cheaper to get it done than to cancel the whole thing. After all, how long did the last big recession last? Maybe better days are coming in a few years.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Image is everything, reality is nothing.

        Honda makes, what they call anyway, a half ton truck and just because it has a V6 that is no more efficient than the competition's V8, they get a pass as being green. Toyota got that same pass until recently (and still does at times).
      • 6 Years Ago

      Perhaps it will win the North American COTY awards as well.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I love the GT-R. Too bad the sales guy at Nissan was such a bitch. "You can't have one, It's only for promotional only"
        • 6 Years Ago
        Yeah, too bad all the rest of their cars suck!!!!1
        • 6 Years Ago
        "You can't have one, It's only for promotional only"

        Nissan's intention wasn't to have the GT-R compete for market share with its competitors. It was designed to draw people into their showrooms so they can get people to buy from the Nissan product line (Altima, Maxima, Sentra, etc.)..

        The GT-R is a marketing tool - and could be quite an effective one at that...
      • 6 Years Ago
      "Nissan has hit a major home run with its latest Skyline, known as the GT-R here in the States."

      Nowhere on Earth is the current '09 GT-R called a "Skyline". The JDM Nissan Skyline is the Infiniti G35 in the US. The name "Skyline GT-R" was retired with the R34 model.

      Nice reporting fail, Autoblog.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I was just going to say this. The Current GTR is NOT a Skyline. The GTR is now a seperate car from the SkylineInfiniti G series.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I've seen one of these, and from behind it's easily mistaken for a Chevy Impala or Cobalt.

        • 6 Years Ago
        sorry, i disagree. i've seen two and knew exactly what i was looking at.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Sort of an aside....but is the A5 selling well?
        • 6 Years Ago
        The A5, in Fairfield County, CT, has a 3 month waiting list. Not sure if that represents it selling well or if it means that production hasn't peaked yet...but they are hard to come by. The S5 is even harder to get.

        To me, the Audi should have won due to value, styling, practicality and the availability of a real transmission.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I'd almost vote for the Audi, smooth and sexy isn't exactly what they've been known for. I parked next to one this morning at the Gym, man, that car is sweet.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not sure what you consider well, sales are up 1,800% YTD (5,056 vs 266) but I'm sure that's a result of the car having just been released last year. MTD is up 472% - again most likely a result of the same.

        I love the A5, Hopefully the 3.0TDI will be here sooner rather than later.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The one and only choice for COTY. I agree many great cars have entered the industry this year, however none more deserving that the Nissan GTR. Before it, only the Z06 performed in a way that beat the exotics for a lot less. For this year, the GTR is that automobile. Kudos to Nissan for building this car and Congratulations for earning (totally earning) this award.
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