The Teana, Nissan Motor Philippines deluxe midsize sedan, emerged as the "2011-2012 Automobile of the Year" as officially proclaimed at the awards ceremonies of the "2010-11 Auto Focus People's Choice Awards" (AFPCA) last Friday, October 21 at the Valle Verde Country Club, Pasig City. The Nissan Teana was also voted as the "Mid-size Sedan of the Year".

The majority of votes for this year's polls emanated from ballots that appeared every Wednesday in the motoring section of the Philippine Star throughout July-September, and which registered the equivalent of 3 votes each in the overall tally. These ballots were filled-in by voters and submitted at drop centers at select Air21outlets and Caltex stations nationwide.

Online votes were also cast through the Auto Focus website and these were limited to only one vote per duly registered e-mail address during the 3-month nationwide public poll period. The 3-month poll throughout July 1 to September 30, 2011 determined the Philippines' most popular makes and models and sought out the public's choice for the top "Automobile of the Year" award as well as "Models of the Year" in 13 distinct categories.

In the other thirteen 2011-12 Model of the Year categories, the winners are as follows:

The Kia Picanto won the "Subcompact of the Year" award with the Hyundai Accent as runner-up. The newly-launched Nissan Sentra was the "Compact of the Year" followed by the Hyundai Elantra. The Hyundai Genesis was the "Large Sedan of the Year" titlist with the Audi A8 in the next spot.

"Sports Car of the Year" honors went to the Hyundai Genesis Coupe for the third year in a row with the Porsche Carrera 911 GTS in close pursuit. The Isuzu Crosswind kept what is now a 4-year stranglehold on the "AUV of the Year" category in what has always been a tight race with the runner-up Toyota Innova.

The "Minivan of the Year" category saw a new winner in the Nissan Grand Livina with the recently-launched Toyota Alphard coming in next. And the 2009 Automobile of the Year, the Hyundai Grand Starex became a 6-time "Full-size Van of the Year" honoree with a surprise runner-up in tow, the Foton View. For the "Pickup of the Year" category, the Nissan Navara went back-to-back followed by the Toyota Hilux.

The first AFPCA Automobile of the Year (2005), the Nissan XTrail, returned atop the "Compact SUV of the Year" derby with the new Kia Sportage following suit. The Nissan Murano snagged first-time honors for "Midsize SUV of the Year" with the Hyundai Santa Fe not far behind. The Porsche Cayenne capped a 4-year streak as "Large SUV of the Year" with the Toyota Land Cruiser in close pursuit. And finally, for models that couldn't be directly classified in the 12 standard categories, the Kia Soul bagged the "Open Class Category" over the Suzuki SX4.

"Since 2005, the aim of the yearly AFPCA public poll has been on one hand to give the motoring public, including automobile buyers a chance to be heard, and on the other hand have a sounding board for local car-makers and distributors to gauge what models appeal to the local market," said Ray Butch Gamboa, Sunshine Television Chairman and CEO. "Ultimately, this annual exercise that determines the most preferred models in each category and the most popular automobile in a given year hopes to improve the overall quality of vehicles that are being sold in the country."

All the winners of the BDO 2011-2012 Auto Focus Automobile of the Year - People's Choice Awards shall be displayed in the up and coming Auto Focus Motor Show & Auto Expo, slated at the concert grounds of the SM Mall of Asia from November 10 to 13. This is the annual "grand display & test drive" and veritable one-stop shop of current-model automobiles in time for the historical holiday auto-shopping peak period.