Geneva Motor Show: the star attractions
March 2013 marked the 83rd running of the Geneva Motor Show – and the RAC have reviewed the star attractions in Switzerland – from high-end, hi-tech hybrid hypercars to innovative real-world vehicles. Read the car reviews on some of our highlights from the show:
- There were two extremely significant new car reveals at Geneva. On the eve of the show came McLaren’s new P1 hypercar, featuring a hybrid powertrain pumping out 916hp and Formula 1 inspired technology. An all-electric range of around 12 miles but 0-62mph in less than three seconds is seriously impressive, too.
- Anything McLaren does Ferrari can do better, or so the Italian manufacturer seems to think. It’s new hypercar – called LaFerrari – was revealed on the day of the show and uses a 6.3-litre V12 with an electric motor to deliver a P1 pipping 952hp. It’ll be slightly faster than the McLaren, but there’s no word on its ‘green’ hybrid credentials or electric-only range as yet.
- Porsche will soon release a petrol-electric hypercar too, but the firm chose not to show it at Geneva, opting to unveil its new 911 GT3 instead. This is a track-focused version of Porsche’s regular 911 sports car, featuring a paddle-shift automatic gearbox for the first time.
- Rounding out the jaw-dropping super and hypercars in Geneva was the Lamborghini Veneno. Named after a famous fighting bull and based on the firm’s Aventador model, only three of the 740hp machines will be built – all have been already sold at a staggering price of €3.1 million each.
- Coming back down to earth, plenty of more conventional vehicles were on show at the Swiss auto expo – including the new Nissan Note. Redesigned as a supermini from its previous mini-MPV guise, the Japanese firm is looking to take on the Ford Fiesta. Strong practicality and efficiency means the British-build motor could well succeed.
- Mitsubishi is aiming to prove that 4x4s don’t automatically equal inefficiency. It showed its Outlander Plug-in hybrid off-roader at Geneva this year – combining a clean 2.0-litre petrol engine with a powerful electric motor, it’s targeting 147.9mpg combined and should have a range of 557 miles. Strong stuff for a hybrid.
- Taking command of the fuel efficiency camp was Volkswagen’s XL1. It’s a production-ready, two-seat high-efficiency vehicle that will return around 313mpg – amazing figures indeed. This road-going model could cost close to £70,000 if Volkswagen builds a limited number of vehicles but, more significantly, it shows what technology could be in the next Golf hatchback.
- In fact, VW was showing a new frugal version of its current Golf model. Using the firm’s efficiency-focused technology, the Golf Bluemotion is set to average 88.3mpg from its 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine, with a potential range of 1,000 miles.
- A double entry here – French manufacturers Renault and Peugeot both showed production-ready compact crossovers in Geneva. Powered by frugal four-cylinder petrol and turbodiesel engines, the Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008 both offer practicality, style, and sub-100g/km CO2 efficiency. Competition will be tough.
- Set to rival many European brands, Chinese manufacturer Qoros was showcasing its new Qoros 3 mid-size family saloon at Geneva.
The cars on show in Geneva proved many manufacturers are, despite economic pressures in many regions in the best health they’ve seen in recent times. From £1 million exotic metal to sub-£10,000 superminis and city cars, 2013 promises to be a great year for the car.