Tesla Model X Nabs Golden Steering Wheel Award For Best SUV, BMW i3 Best EV

NOV 8 2016 BY JAY COLE 30

The reason for that comment might have been because it was via one of our US-based writers.

In actual fact, the award for “hottest and best new models” on sale in the European market has been given out for almost 40 years now, and is overseen by German media giant AutoBild.

“While the small crossover sector is relatively new, the more traditional large SUV market is still thriving. Innovative upstarts Tesla managed to secure the overall gong for its new Model X, beating out the Jaguar F-Pace and new Skoda Kodiaq.

The electric SUV rewrites the rulebook in every way, with a futuristic cabin, clever ‘Falcon Wing’ doors and, most importantly, the astonishing electric powertrain capable of powering it from 0-62mph in a mere 3.2 seconds in P100D form.  Despite this, it still manages to seat six and tow up to 2.3 tonnes.”

For 2017, the BMW i3 is available both a 33 kWH battery, and this new "Crossfade" color

For 2017, the BMW i3 is available both a 33 kWH battery, and this new “Crossfade” color

In addition to Tesla’s win, the BMW i3 also took home the award for “Best Hybrid/Electric Car”.  Says UK’s AutoExpress on its parent media’s decision to recognize the BMW:

“It’s one of the oldest cars in this category, but BMW’s pioneering electric hatchback takes a Golden Steering Wheel ahead of new pretenders to the crown like the Hyundai Ioniq and Kia Niro.

New batteries for 2016 improve the i3’s electric range further, but the rest of the excellent package is unchanged. The stylish minimalist cabin, impressive performance, clever tech and desirability ensure the BMW i3 status as one of our (and your) favourite electric cars – it also won the UK choice award.”

Almost 20,000 Model X Sales Have Been Made To Date

Almost 20,000 Model X Sales Have Been Made To Date

Despite the all-electric EV only having been in volume/mass production since around March, Tesla added a checklist of “the ways Model X has gotten better with time” while acknowledging the win.

Falcon Wing Doors

  • 2x improvement in door sensor object detection
  • 25% improvement in opening/closing speed
  • Dynamic profile adjustment to indoor mode when roof sensor detects a low ceiling
  • 83% reduction in customer-reported issues with door opening/closing

Powered front doors and remote keyless entry

  • Refined keyfob detection for smart automatic front door behavior as you approach, enter, or leave the car
  • 8x improvement in keyfob battery life; automated alert from the car if the battery gets low
  • Several improvements to power front door movement and latching system, leading to 51% reduction in door issues and improved performance on hills
  • Wind noise customer-reported issues reduced by 22% with a combination of hardware modifications and fit/finish improvements
Tesla Model X Interior With Seating For Seven

Tesla Model X Interior With Seating For Seven

Interior Temperature Management

  • Introduced Cabin Overheat Protection by managing the maximum interior temperature of Model X through software
  • Improved HVAC performance by increasing maximum fan speed with an over-the-air software update

Second row seats

  • Multiple over-the-air updates have enhanced seat motion, obstacle detection, pitch calibration, and usability
  • Software enhancements have added intelligent behaviors between seats, adjusting spacing differently, for example, depending on which rows are occupied

Infotainment System

  • Touchscreen and Bluetooth connectivity improvements via over-the-air software update
  • Largest user interface overhaul since the launch of Model S in over-the-air Software 8.0 rollout

Our commitment is to be best-in-class in safety, performance, comfort, and reliability in all of our vehicles. Model X is no exception. As we continue to accelerate the advent of sustainable energy, we invite you to visit one of our showrooms or request a stop from a Tesla mobile Design Studio near you.

Tesla statement on Golden Steering Wheel win:

Model X Wins the Golden Steering Wheel

Tesla Model X In Paris Last Month

Tesla Model X In Paris Last Month

Today, we are truly honored to announce that Model X has been awarded the Golden Steering Wheel (Das Goldene Lenkrad), one of the most prestigious automotive awards in the world. Candidates for this award are nominated by hundreds of thousands across Europe for excellence across six categories. The Golden Steering Wheel jury, composed of professional race car drivers, accomplished technicians, editors, designers, and digital and connectivity experts, then spent three days judging Model X.

This excellence did not come without its share of challenges early on. Model X is a complex vehicle to build, and its advanced feature set introduced some obstacles as we ramped production in early 2016. In the months since, we have introduced significant updates to make Model X an even better car. Most of these refinements have rolled out as over-the-air software updates, which enhance each vehicle regardless of when it was built. For the small number of improvements that are hardware-related, changes have rolled out to our early owners via priority Tesla Service. We have implemented those same changes in our factory immediately, because we do not believe in waiting for the next model year to introduce improvements to our cars.

As a result of this continuous improvement, Model X owners have seen a 92% reduction in reliability concerns over the past year. Nearly 20,000 owners are now experiencing the quickest, smartest, and safest SUV ever, with more than 90% of owners saying they would buy Model X again.


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30 Comments on "Tesla Model X Nabs Golden Steering Wheel Award For Best SUV, BMW i3 Best EV"

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Congrats to all the folks @ Tesla who stuck thru the nightmare that was the Model X Project!

May Model 3 and Y, be much smoother sailing…

How can bmw i3 get an award, when it only has 4 stars in EuroNcap safty test?

It scored a 4 only due to pedestrian safety. Short bonnet = cracked skull on windshield or A-pillar if hit.

As far as passenger safety, the i3 scored higher than the Model S.

20,000 X made so far? Didnt they have 40,ooo reservations?

I’m not sure what the exact percentages are, but the consensus of informed opinion seems to be that a large percentage of Model X reservation holders have delayed converting their reservation to an order because they’re waiting for options which supposedly are in the works for the Model X, but can’t yet be ordered.

For example, what the heck happened to the non-“premium” second row seats? Tesla isn’t even talking about any alternative seats anymore.

A non Tesla won an EV award better get the umbrella out…

Never heard of this award before.

“…the Golden Steering Wheel (Das Goldene Lenkrad), one of the most prestigious automotive awards in the world.”

Congratulations to Tesla for another trophy in its by now truly ginormous trophy case, but an award doesn’t become “one of the most prestigious… in the world” merely because the media company giving out the award claims it is.

Just picked up a second 2014 BEV i3 GIGA World…what a bargain BMW CPO..like new but $15K less expensive. The car is really a terrific run-about.

Drove a 2017 irex from Vent county to Calabasas, through the canyons to Santa Monica and back to Vent County yesterday. 104 miles elapsed. 26 miles of range remaining. The i3 EPA rating is ultra conservative.

“Never heard of that award but apparently its a thing…”

Testimony to the American openness regarding the rest of the world.
Greetings from Austria (Skiing, no kangaroos)

I upvote this remark due to today’s election results = comment synergy.

Well, green cars are now officially boned. Here is how this is going to play out. All of these are ALREADY pieces of legislation that have either been put into official policy docs, or have been put into bills, or passed into law in one or more states, has been in one or more lawsuits, or are in well documented ALEC model legislation. 1) Federal EV $7,500 tax incentive will be removed in the next budget. (current proposed House Budget) 2) All wind and solar tax incentives will suffer the same fate, making it more expensive to produce your own electricity to run your EV. (current proposed House Budget) 3) Legislation will be passed that removes California’s EPA waiver system, where California has the ability to write their own emissions laws. This will end CARB mandates. (multiple lawsuits, and previous legislation) 4) Federal highway tax on EV’s like state highway tax on EV’s in replacement of gas taxes, but much more expensive than gas tax in a similar gas car. These will be more punitive than owning a typical gas car. This will make it more expensive for everybody to own EV’s they already own. (ALEC model legislation, already passed… Read more »

Mother nature is in control of the situation. Mess with her and she’ll take care of the rest.


Such negativity! While there will be some effect, it won’t be gloom and doom (sound familiar?) that you make it out to be. For example, there won’t be any impact to demand or sales of Tesla P100DL nor Tesla 3. But it could have some effect in mid/low end EV, at least initially if (IF) tax credit goes away prematurely.

Far bigger concern is the economy taking a dump. That will impact EV sales far more than anything specific to EV. Given that so much power has been given to Obama, that power will carry over to Dump and things could get dicey. This is why cheering for more government power is a bad thing. Even if that happen to be “your guy” at the time, next guy could be a complete a-hole.

It will be interesting how things will play out, but it will certainly NOT be EV gloom and doom you make it out to be.

Interesting discussion for sure. Nix got me googling what it would take to eliminate the EPA (at worse) or significantly reducing its plans. The articles all seem to indicate it would not be all that easy….but who knows.

It doesn’t seem all that clear cut.

georgeS — It would actually be very easy. the entire bill would be: Repeal: 42 U.S. Code § 7543 (b) That’s it. They can slip that into any bill, and California will no longer have the ability to set their own emissions standards. The current law is based upon prohibiting the states to set their own standards, and then allowing California to apply to waivers so they can set their own standards. Repeal the waiver, and all that is left is this prohibition: “(a) Prohibition No State or any political subdivision thereof shall adopt or attempt to enforce any standard relating to the control of emissions from new motor vehicles….” https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/42/7543 You have to remember that the EPA originally DENIED California’s waiver request when a Bush political appointee overruled the EPA career professionals. https://thinkprogress.org/bush-appointee-overruled-epa-staff-in-order-to-deny-california-waiver-on-emissions-f96368ef5cf9#.9m93xiard California had to sue, and Obama had to direct the EPA to reconsider their original decision. There have already been multiple political fights and legal fights over this very section of the law. It has been attacked as there being too many different standards, as if every state were allowed their own different standards (not true, there are just federal and CARB standards, and each state… Read more »
georges — An example of actual proposed legislation that has ALREADY been submitted is Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming’s Senate bill termed Defending America’s Affordable Energy and Jobs Act. It didn’t completely nullify the entire waiver section, but it effectively would gut the waiver program, and would end California’s existing waiver that authorized their ZEV program. This was a 2011 bill, and would have forced California to end their existing waiver program that authorizes the ZEV mandate, by Model Year 2017: “(B) Requests for waivers Section 209(b) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7543(b)) is amended by adding at the end the following: (4) Requests for waivers Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act or any other law— (A) no request for a waiver of the application of this section by any State for standards to control emissions of any air pollutant that is a greenhouse gas (as defined in section 3 of the Defending America’s Affordable Energy and Jobs Act) from new motor vehicles or new motor vehicle engines of model year 2017 or later may be granted by the Administrator; and (B) no grant of any waiver by the Administrator before the date of enactment of this… Read more »
SparkEV — I actually CUT this list down to just what already has documented legislation behind it that has already been submitted or passed previously and can be tracked and documented. If I were to expand the list to what lobbyists, special interest groups, and politicians have previously said should be done, but haven’t yet put into laws and submitted them, then that would be true doom and gloom. How would you like a $50,000 dollar penalty for disconnecting your house from the grid and installing your own battery backup solar system? The justification for that penalty is supposedly that the electric company invested in delivering electricity to your home, and this would represent all of the future profits that the electric company would lose after investing into getting electricity to your home. How about a $10,000 dollar per vehicle “Recycling” fee on every electric car, supposedly to pay for recycling your dead battery? How about federally mandated battery replacement after 5 years, because of the supposed fire risk of aging batteries? How about mandated quarterly inspections of your electric vehicle (every 3 months) that the battery and wiring isn’t damaged? For your safety of course. How about ban that… Read more »

The only problem is that totally goes against the pubs platform of states rights…but who knows. We shall see.

When it suits their desires that there is a single federal law, they say that companies shouldn’t have to deal with a patchwork of 50 different sets of regulations from each state. They say that is bad for business, and kills jobs.

When it suits their desires there there are individual state laws, they say state’s rights.

I’ll let others editorialize if they wish, but the use of both of those arguments has been very well documented and their use of those two arguments is incontrovertible.

Nix, you’re getting all worked up in a frenzied hysteria for nothing. There have been similar “threats” in the past, yet life pretty much went on normally. For example, right wingers thought their world will end with Obama’s election, yet not much happened.

I can go over each of your points to show why they’re no big deal, but you wouldn’t believe it anyway. Best thing to do is to look back in history and see what happened: not much.

As for EV, Dump is an a-hole, but not stupid; he is a Wharton boy after all. US is currently the world leader in EV, and I doubt he’ll flush it. If I’m him, I’ll use US EV tech to “make America great again” propaganda. I mean, Tesla P100DL made in USA spanking Europe’s finest sports cars is something to be damn proud of. Same could be said about Bolt vs Leaf/i3/eGolf/etc.

Calm down, keep cool, have a Vodka Martini, and let Dump know how great EVs are even without regard to climate change.

Whatever SparkEV. You are in massive denial.

Meanwhile, back in reality, the type of consequences I predicted has already begun:


I’ve become convinced that Nix is actually a team of people, not just one guy. No one person could possibly display so much expertise on such a wide variety of subjects!

Seriously, Nix, I greatly appreciate you taking the time to post that here. I knew that a Trump presidency would be bad for “green” issues and EV mandates, but you’ve really laid out all the changes which appear likely to happen.

With our schizophrenia, we sometimes feel that way too…

^^ Yea, what we said! +1


If Pishtu Mulli says it is prestigious then it must be. Still never heard of this prestigious award before.

GM’s cautious approach to EV production seems brilliant now. If Tesla survives the next four years, it will be as unbelievable a Trump’s election.

Well, well, what do you know? GM didn’t waste any time taking a dump on Dump.