The Globe Drive Aesthetics Committee, a 21-member group consisting of journalists and car enthusiasts ranging in profession from engineer to industrial designer to lawyer to artist, have voted, and declared one car the most beautiful automobile for sale in Canada
Relying upon a completely unscientific mandate – "beauty-is-in-the-eye-of-the-beholder" – each panelist first submitted a Top 10 list independently.
Demonstrating the range of opinion, in the first round the group named 87 vehicles in total. We used a 10-9-8 points system to cull a short list of 23. In the second round, the panelists were restricted to voting exclusively on those automobiles. Voila, the final Top 10 emerged.
9. Maserati Ghibli (tie)
Points Earned: 35
Base Price: $75,800
Tech Specs: Twin-turbo 3.0-litre V-6 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: The Ghibli exemplifies the spirit of Italian automotive design, with artful proportions and feline curves that remind us of why Italy became known as the world capital of style.
The Judges Speak: “As far as $75,800 mid-size four-door luxury sports sedan vehicles powered by Ferrari-built twin-turbo V-6 engines go, this is one of the best.” – Andrew Clark
9. Audi RS7 (tie)
Points Earned: 35
Base Price: $115,000
Tech Specs: 4.0-litre turbocharged V-8 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: The RS7 is the epitome of understated elegance, with an aerodynamic roofline and an air intake that conjures a jet fighter on a low strafing run.
The Judges Speak: “A four-door coupe that leaves competitors in its design dust.” – Mark Hacking
8. Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG
Points Earned: 46
Base Price: $80,700
Tech Specs: Naturally aspirated 5.5-litre V-8 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: Great design and lasting beauty are usually based on classic maxims – and none is more important than the insistence that form follow function. The SLK’s function is to be a great roadster, and its form reflects that perfectly, with a crisp, minimalist shape wrapped around a two-seat cockpit.
The Judges Speak: “Mayhem on wheels.” – Rob Mowat
7. Porsche 918
Points Earned: 50
Base Price: $845,000 (U.S.)
Tech Specs: 4.6-litre direct-injection V-8 plug-in hybrid engine
Why it’s Beautiful: With a shape that reflects the advanced technology beneath its flowing skin, the Spyder has an alien beauty that takes us into a new world of automotive aesthetics.
The Judges Speak: “Generates power under braking – and at a standstill.” – Dan Proudfoot
6. Corvette Stingray
Points Earned: 73
Base Price: $52,745
Tech Specs: 7.0-litre V-8 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: The seventh-generation Corvette is powerful in every sense of the word – it’s fast, loud, and visually stunning. The Corvette’s aesthetics strike some as over-the-top, but this is a car that will stop you in your tracks – you can love it or you can hate it, but you won’t ignore the Corvette.
The Judges Speak: “I have always loved the look of the 1969 Stingray. The long engine is gone but the styling is still sleek and smooth worthy of the name. Again.” – Joanne Elves
Birth of the Stingray: From sketches to finished product
5. Tesla Model S
Points Earned: 80
Base Price: $78,970
Tech Specs: 85 kWh lithium-ion battery pack
Why it’s Beautiful: Until the Model S came along, no one thought of electric cars as sexy. Tesla shocked us all (pun intended) by combining battery power with beautiful lines and sleek detailing. The Model S is an aesthetic winner.
The Judges Speak: “If all electrics looked this good, they’d be selling.” – Richard Russell
4. Audi R8
Points Earned: 83
Base Price: $134,000
Tech Specs: 4.2-litre V-8 DOHC engine
Why it’s Beautiful: Audi is the Armani suit of the automotive world, with restrained but powerful design based on aerodynamics and engineering efficiency. And the R8 is Audi’s most beautiful model, a true supercar classic that looks like a de-cluttered Ferrari.
The Judges Speak: “If Michelangelo was a 13-year-old kid stuck in a dull geography class, this is the car he’d draw in the back of his notebook.” – Peter Cheney
Buying Used: Expect to pay at least $100,000 for a used Audi R8
3. Porsche 911
Points Earned: 99
Base Price: $96,200
Tech Specs: 3.4-litre flat-six engine
Why it’s Beautiful: A thing of beauty is a joy forever, as they say. As proof, witness the iconic 911, which has been around for more than 50 years, and still looks great. The 911’s shape has been tweaked and modernized, but the appeal of the latest version is as powerful and fresh as the 1964 original.
The Judges Speak: “It’s a classic shape that has stood the test of time.” – Matthew Finbow
2. Aston Martin Vanquish
Points Earned: 122
Base Price: $297,346
Tech Specs: 5.9-litre V-12 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: The Vanquish resembles a high-gloss artillery shell (which is not a bad thing when it comes to sports cars). Its aesthetics are sublime yet brutal, with a smoothly arcing profile, a hood that swells over its massive V-12 motor, and low-profile windows that give it the look of a rolling machine-gun nest. Perfect.
The Judges Speak: “It looks even better in red; the pretty ones always do.” – Andrew Braithwaite
1. Jaguar F-Type
Points Earned: 168
Base Price: $72,900
Tech Specs: 3.0-litre, supercharged V-6 engine
Why it’s Beautiful: This is automotive design at its best, with a shape inspired by Jaguar’s classic 1960s E-Type, yet very much of the moment. With lines that rise and fall over a set of beautiful mechanical underpinnings, the F-Type is a turbocharged supermodel. As the descendant of a machine that Enzo Ferrari himself called “the most beautiful car ever made,” the F-Type had a lot to live up to, but it succeeds effortlessly.
The Judges Speak: “This Cat oozes awesome, and the F is for fabulous.” – Darren McGee