German car club mulls scrapping award after vote-rigging

FRANKFURT Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:21pm EST

FRANKFURT Jan 22 (Reuters) - Germany's ADAC car club, Europe's largest and most influential, is considering scrapping its annual car award after admitting it had falsified this year's results.

ADAC's communications director resigned in disgrace after conceding he manipulated the results of the car club's coveted "Yellow Angel" award for Germany's favourite car, which was won last week by the Volkswagen Golf model.

"Does the Yellow Angel have a future? No, absolutely not. It has no future," ADAC president Peter Meyer was quoted as saying by German weekly Automobilwoche on Wednesday.

The ADAC confirmed the interview but said there had not been a decision about the future of the award.

The scandal struck at the core of its credibility and critics raised questions about its car safety tests. The falsified results simply overstated the number of votes received by what was in any case the winning car, giving a false impression of the scope of the award.

ADAC has over 18 million members. Its Yellow Angel award can give a fillip to sales in a competitive domestic market though it carries little weight abroad. (Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach, writing by Harro ten Wolde; editing by Ralph Boulton)