The Korea Automobile Journalist Association recently awarded the Toyota Camry as the 2013 Korea Car of the Year. It is the first time for a foreign brand to be awarded such, since its inception. The Japanese midsize sedan earned the highest score of 78.75 points to edge out rivals in the criteria of price, performance, safety and fuel efficiency.
The Korea Car of the Year Award was established in 2010, it has been dominated by Korean brands in the past two years. The Kia K5 won the award in 2011, while the Hyundai i40 won in 2012.
Hyundai officials reportedly snubbed the awarding ceremony after having been tipped off about Toyota’s victory. The Hyundai Santa Fe, which was the Korean giant’s bet lost by a ‘razor-thin’ margin and was only given a ‘special award’.
The Lexus GS and Prius Hybrid also took top spots for Japanese carmaker in the performance and green-car categories, respectively.
The Toyota Camry is the second best-selling imported car in Korea, next to the BMW 520d for 2012. The Camry is also seen as a major boost to Toyota sales in Korea as it rose by more than double from 5,020 units in 2011 to 10,795 in 2012. Toyota Korea sells the US-made Camry. In the Philippines, the Camry has been the best-selling model in its segment since 2001.