2017 Geneva Motor Show Gems
The world's most glamourous auto show is filled with supercars, luxury cars, futuristic concept cars, and cars you can't buy in the United States, but wish that you could.
No, they didn't spell Cedric wrong, the name is a play on SElf DRIving Car. It's VW's first Level 5 fully autonomous concept, whiich not only means that the electric car can drive itself, but that it doesn't even have a steering wheel for a human to take control. You just hop in its large sliding doors and tell it where you want to go. Since you don't need it, its windsheild can double as an OLED TV screen to keep you entertained if you don't want to just sit back and enjoy the view. VW figures it will be perfect for the growing ride-sharing ecosystem when something like it hits the road in the next decade or so.
2017 RUF CTR
Hey, who parked the old Porsche in the middle of the show? Actually this is an all-new car designed and built by German Porsche tuner RUF as a tribute to its 1987 Yellowbird 911, which was the fastest car in the world at the time. Underneath its old-school style bodywork lurks a high tech carbon fiber chassis with an integrated steel roll cage and crumple zones. It's powered by a 700 hp 3.6-liter flat six that RUF says is good for a 225 mph top speed, beating the original's 213 mph mark. Thirty examples will be made to celebrate the anniversary at a price that's yet to be announced, but will surely be high enough to rival its top speed.
Mercedes-AMG GT Concept
The GT Concept is the first four-door designed by the German automaker's high performance subbrand. Tapping into technolgy developed for its Formula One race cars, the GT features an all-wheel-drive hybrid drivetrain that combines a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 and electric motor to generate a whopping 805 hp that's good for a sprint to 60 mph in under three seconds. That should be quick enough to put most cars into its sideview mirrors, if it had any. Instead, they're replaced by cameras that pop out of the front fenders. Expect to see something like this forward-looking car in showrooms in a couple of years.
2018 Volvo XC60
Volvo's new midsize crossover checks all of the boxes for the segent, but steps things up with some groundbreaking safety tech. Along with the ability to brake for obstacles in front of it, the car can detect a head-on collission that's about to happen and steer itself out of the way. And if you ignore its blind spot warning, it'll take the wheel and try to stop you from driving into the car in the next lane.
2017 Honda Civic Type-R
The sensible Civic is going full beast mode. The first Type-R to come to the United States will also be the most powerful Honda ever sold here. It's 306 hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four cylinder should put that huge wing to good use, if you're up to the job. The front-wheel-drive Type-R will only be offered with a six-speed manual transmission, so its for serious drivers only. They'll pay around $35,000 for the privilege when it goes on sale this spring.
2018 McLaren 720S
McLaren's new car looks like a million bucks, but will cost closer to a quarter-million, so that's a deal! The carbon fiber supercar sports a 710 hp 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 and a body that's both shaped by and shapes the wind. Those giant black headlight nacelles are mostly empty space so air can flow through them, and every other vent and crease has a purpose other than looking amazing. There's a rear wing that can pop up to improve downforce or act as an air brake, while a dozen sensors operate a hyrdaulic suspension system that can switch from luxury car plush to race track stiff in 2 miliseconds. Quick.
Bentley EXP 12 Speed 6e Concept
The only thing smoother than a Bentley W12 engine may be the electric motor that powers this concept. The battery-powered convertible boasts a range of 310 miles per charge and doesn't even need to be plugged in, thanks to a wireless inductive charging system. Bentley hasn't committed to making it, but since its sister company Porsche has an electric car in the works that's about this size, it has the tools to make it happen. Regardless, Bentley says the body of the car is a preview of things to come across its lineup.
2018 Range Rover Velar
The midsize $50,000 Velar slips into Range Rover's lineup between the Evoque and Sport, and may prove to be a more stylish and capable than either of them.
2018 Ferrari 812 Superfast
Not every car lives up to its name, but with a 789 hp 6.5-liter V12 this one's is right on the money. With a top speed of over 211 mph, it is the fastest front-engine production car in the world. And quick, too. The sprint to 60 mph takes under three seconds. A four-wheel steering system improves both handling and stability, and has a "side slip" feature that helps you get the drift.
2018 Porsche 911 GT3
This one's a natural. Porsche's newest 911 is aimed at a particular breed of enthusiast. Forget the turbos and electric motors, this car has 500 hp naturally-aspirated flat-six engine and a manual transmission. Sure, an automatic is avalable, but do you really want to spring for the option on top of its $144,650 base price?
2018 Lamborghini Huracan Performante
Priced at around $280,000, it's not the most expensive Lamborghini, but its the fastest car on the world. Not for top speed, but around a track. Namely Germany's famed Nurburgring, which Lamborghini says it lapped quicker than any production car in history. It did it with the help of a 640 hp V10 and a system of computer-controlled wings and spoilers that can crank up the downforce in the turns, and turn it into a sleek slipstreamer on the straights, where it can hit 202 mph. Hey, that is pretty fast.
2018 Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo
Porsche's been making SUVs for so long now that the idea of a Porsche station wagon doesn't even seem odd. The Sport Turismo is the first of its kind from the automaker, and also the first Panamera available with five-seats. So pack up the kids and hit the road. Or the track. There will be four different all-wheel-drive models to do it in when they hit the road later this year, in cluding a hyper fast Turbo and a plug-in hybrid, at prices ranging from around $98,000 to $155,000.
2018 Subaru XV
No surprise, the new Subaru Impreza has spawned a new XV crossover wagon thingy. With wheel arch protectors and 8.6 inches of ground clearance it could clear a slightly deflated soccer ball in the driveway, but is really aimed at snowy locales and the gravel roads leading to summer music fests. Rock on.
2018 Volkswagen Arteon
The VW CC has returned, except this time it has an actual name that you've probably never heard before. VW's new flagship sedan features near luxury-levels of performance and technology, including the ability to sense if the driver's been incapacitated and pull itself over to the side of the road as it calls for help. Amazing. And a little creepy.
2018 Alpine A110
What better place to relauch Alpine than a city on the edge of the Alps? Renault is resurrecting the historic marque with a retromodern version of the A110, which went out of production 40 years ago. The mid-engine coupe is made of aluminum and weighs less than 2,400 pounds, hardly a burden for its 252 hp turbocharged-four cylinder engine. Prices start at a reasonable $60,000, but that's the exchange rate. It'll only be sold in Europe and Japan. Sacre bleu!