The Oxford-built MINI gets Jeremy Clarkson’s vote at The Sunday Times Motor Awards 2020

MINI John Cooper Works car

The MINI, built in Oxford, has won two honours in this year’s Sunday Times and Jeremy Clarkson’s favourite cars of 2020, Best British-built Car of the Year and Jeremy Clarkson’s People’s Car of the Year.

The MINI Electric won the Best British-built Car of the Year. Plant Oxford worked hard, training up to become a multi-skilled, flexible team who can work on both traditional combustion engine cars, as well as electric ones.

The Sunday Times said: “If Greta Thunberg ditched the boat, forgot about her bicycle and left her walking boots at home, she might consider joining the growing band of drivers doing away with petrol and diesel and switching to electric. And the hoot-out-loud Mini Electric might be the sort of tonic that could, while she’s in it, lift the world’s troubles from her shoulders. Put that climate emergency on hold.”

The Oxford manufacturer also won Jeremy Clarkson’s “People’s Car of the Year” for its John Cooper Works GP MINI.

Jeremy Clarkson said: “It is too loud, too powerful and a crazed dog on the motorway, but it is also one of the best cars I’ve driven all year.”

Last week BMW Group reported that The MINI brand delivered a total of 208,144 (down 20 per cent) vehicles to customers in the year to the end of September, but in the third quarter, sales new by 1.9 per cent.

The fully-electric MINI Cooper SE has proved particularly popular with customers, with around 10,000 units sold in the year to date.

Thanks to an increase in global demand, hundred of jobs at Oxford’s BMW MINI plant have been saved, as the car plant had previously said it would moved to a two-shift week because of the effects of the global pandemic. The plant employs around 4,000 people.

But BMW has warned that the situation will be kept under close review.