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Geneva Motor Show Preview - Swiss Cheese!

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HYUNDAI I40

With this car, Hyundai will have more ‘i’s than Steve Jobs. Jokes apart, the i40, which will premiere at Geneva, is designed and engineered at Hyundai’s R&D facility in Germany. While, at the unveiling, the car will be shown in its estate version, a sedan will follow later in 2011, and that’s certainly of interest to our market. Even more so, when one considers that the i40 will come as a 1.7-litre diesel as one of the engine options. And of course, if the i20 is anything to go by, the i40 will be neck-deep in features too.

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FIAT FREEMONT

Fiat FreemontThe first product of the Fiat-Chrysler alliance is set to debut at Geneva. Based on the Dodge Journey, the Freemont is aimed at those who want an adventurous yet practical vehicle. Everyone wants to do a friendly people-carrier these days, it seems! The Freemont’s interior promises lots of space and features in addition to versatility when it comes to interior configuration. It will offer a range of diesel engine options too, such as a 140-170 bhp 2.0-litre MultiJet with a manual gearbox. A 4x4 version will follow later, along with a 276-bhp 3.6-litre V6 petrol engine, both sporting automatic gearboxes. A seven-seater, diesel-powered SUV? Isn’t that selling like hot cakes in India right now?

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MERCEDES-BENZ SLK-CLASS

The first SLK pioneered the folding-roof phenomenon and the newest, third-gen SLK combines that feature with a panorama roof with Magic Sky Control. Even with the top up, you can switch from light (a virtually transparent roof) to dark (a completely blacked-out roof) at the press of a button. Fantastic, isn’t it? It almost makes one forget that it is powered by a range of superb motors, the most powerful being a 3.5-litre V6 with 302 bhp that will take it from zero to 100 kmph in 5.4 seconds and on to a restricted top whack of 250 kmph.

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LAMBORGHINI AVENTADOR

Lamborghini’s replacement for its erstwhile flagship, the Murcielago supercar, is tipped to be one of the biggest showstoppers at Geneva. And no, what you see here is not some radical new design! It’s the rolling chassis of the most advanced Lamborghini ever built — it won’t unveil the design before Geneva, so you will have to make do with the chassis for now. An all-new 6.5-litre 700-bhp V12 will power the Aventador from zero to 100 kmph in 2.9 seconds and its 350 kmph top speed should be good enough for anyone who dares to put pedal to the metal.

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FERRARI FF

This revolutionary new Ferrari, which will come to India, will be first unveiled at Geneva. The FF features a Shooting Brake design which is already a topic of hot debate among enthusiasts. More importantly, the FF is Ferrari’s first-ever four-wheel drive car and can carry four people in comfort. Called the 4RM, Ferrari claims its patented four-wheel drive system weighs 50 per cent less than a conventional system. But it all boils down to what’s under the hood — a 6.2-litre 660-bhp V12 that rockets the FF from zero to 100 kmph in 3.7 seconds. Not bad for a car with 450 litres of boot space. 

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JAGUAR XKR-S

Jaguar is bringing an apex predator to Geneva in the shape of the XKR-S. Jaguar will reveal details only at the show, but we do know that this super-cat develops 550 bhp, good enough for a 0-100 kmph run in 4.2 seconds and has a top speed of 300 kmph. From photographs, it is apparent that the XKR-S features more aerodynamically tuned bodywork. What’s not readily apparent is the revised suspension that it comes with to handle all that power. People who want luxury combined with adrenaline-pumping performance should keep their eyes peeled for this one. 

MORE TO WATCH OUT FOR ON THE NEXT PAGE>>

 

Ghost Current
Rolls-Royce has confirmed that it will display its first-ever electric concept (or experimental, as they say) car at Geneva. Named the 102EX, the car is the fully electric version of the ultra-luxurious Phantom and will serve as a test bed for future alternative-powerplant research. Shocking.

The Full Monte
Skoda will unveil its new design philosophy and logo at Geneva. It will also celebrate 100 years of the Monte Carlo Rally and Skoda’s 110 years in motorsport with the Fabia Monte Carlo special. Bright. 


Small is Still Big
Geneva regular, Tata, will display a new urban small car concept this year. No details are available yet, but we think it’ll be bigger than the Nano. Also on display will be the Indica Vista EV. The Aria and the Manza will be there too. Curious.  

Electric Motion
This one is not surprising. Honda will showcase its Fit (Jazz) EV concept which will be introduced in the US and Japan in 2012. With an estimated range of 160 km, this car will attract the attention of showgoers as well as manufacturers, we think.