The International Geneva Motor Show is held during March of every year in the Swiss city of Geneva. Organised by the Internationale des Constructeurs d’Automobiles, it is considered one of the most important major international auto shows around.
The show was first held way back in 1905, and over the years it has hosted almost every single major internal combustion-engined model in automobile history. Visitors are treated to the unveiling of the latest releases, prototypes, concept cars, new equipment, technical innovation and even political / social debates.
Switzerland lacks an auto industry of its own, and so the Geneva show is regarded as a level playing field for all of the world’s automakers.
This year, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Jaguar, Audi, VW and Volvo were among the many to parade their latest cars.
Exotic supercars often hog the spotlight, but this year, during the 88th show, it was the electric vehicles which stole the show. This highlights the fact that we are moving toward a new age, with a change in trends and an emphasis on a cleaner future.
We took a look at some of the vehicles and news which stood out.
It’s the year of the Tesla-slayers. Entering the EV market, Jag has kicked the doors down. Its first all-electric SUV looks damn good on paper. Against its closest competitor, the Tesla Model X, the I-Pace holds its own when it comes to range, speed and latest tech. Plus, it’s aggressively competitive in price. On the road, though, it still needs to prove itself.
All in all, the I-Pace could give Jaguar the edge in the flourishing EV market.
Powered by an electric hybrid performance drivetrain, the car is set to roll off the production line mid-2019.
Volvo itself also revealed the V60 station wagon.
Mazda Vision Coupe
The breath-taking Mazda Vision Coupe walked away with the ‘Concept Car of the Year’ at the 11th-annual Car Design Night Geneva held during the Geneva Motor Show. This is the second design award won by the Vision Coupe.
Mazda is just churning out beautiful cars lately. Also featured at the show was the new Mazda 6 tourer.
Ferrari 488 Pista
Bellissimo! Ferrari almost turned up too much heat for Geneva to handle in the new 488 Pista. This expensive 211mph Ferrari is almost exclusively aimed at wealthy driving purists. Even the name, Pista, is an homage to the company’s heritage in motor sports.
Speaking of homage, McLaren’s $1 Million ‘Senna’ has already sold all 500 of its exclusive production run. It is now also available in the ‘Carbon Theme’ edition. The green brake callipers and yellow detail pay further tribute to Brazilian racing legend, Ayrton Senna, after whom the car is named.
Flying Cars In Geneva
Whether you choose to see them as cars that fly or planes that drive, Geneva was abuzz with news that the dream was alive. For starters, Dutch company Pal-V unveiled its three-wheel Liberty flying car, priced at $600,000. A cheaper model is also in the works, and will include flight lessons.
Naturally, you need a pilot’s licence to own one and unfortunately, you still need a runway to land and take off.
Also, a collaboration between Audi and AirBus has resulted in the Pop.Up Next, which is essentially a two-seater smart-car sized helicopter. Will it be able to take off out of traffic? No, probably not. In order to achieve vertical take-off, it requires a gigantic drone-like module. We just don’t see this making its way through city streets.
Volkswagen had a number of its I.D. cars on show in Geneva, such as the I.D. Crozz, the I.D. Buzz and the new I.D. Vizzion.
When it comes to autonomous driving, the all-electric Vizzion is probably as far ahead as we can realistically dream. It promises level 5 autonomy, which means it will operate solely on gesture and voice recognition. It’s still a concept, of course, and it shows what VW believes could be possible in the next ten years.
It will have no steering wheel, no pedals, and will learn from situations and environments.
Naturally, the Geneva Motor Show was crammed with high-speed beasts. Some of the standouts included Rimac’s new Concept Two, which can apparently hit 0-60mph in an astonishing 1.85 seconds. You took longer just to read that last sentence.
That would make the Rimac Concept Two one of the fastest cars ever made. And, it’s all-electric.
Hennessey’s Venom F5 is all about raw power, with only 25 being made. It may also be the first car to ever smash 300mph. It is practically marketed as the automobile version of a psychopathic axe-murderer. Whether or not these boasts of insane speeds will prove to be true remains to be seen.
Every year, there is so much on show at the Geneva Motor Show that it’s almost impossible to pick a favourite or cover all the highlights. In this article we didn’t even get around to the new offerings from Mercedes, Porsche, Audi or BMW.
This year, the show will be on from the 8th to the 18th of March. Keep an eye on their website for any more news.