Mild to wild: top five from Geneva Motor Show 2016
The Geneva International Auto Show opened its doors to the public Thursday, and in true Swiss fashion, luxury and lavishness are the underlying themes of the European event. While the show is full of seriously wild vehicles, we’ve picked out a few of our favourites that are still somewhat down-to-earth.
Joining the ever-growing subcompact crossover segment is Audi’s new Q2, slotted right in-between the A3 hatchback and the Q3. With a choice of front or Quattro all-wheel drive, this so far Euro-only model will launch in the fall with several engine choices ranging from 1.4 to 2.0 litres in displacement. As with other Audis, the Q2 will be technology-laden and offer a simplified version of the company’s Virtual Cockpit digital instrument panel.
Porsche 911 R
A news release states, “R stands for Racing at Porsche.” Duh. This even lighter-than-usual 911 is composed of lots of carbon and a magnesium roof, weighing in at a scant 1,370 kilograms and pushing out 500 horsepower. The R screams from 0-100 km/h in 3.8 seconds with a top speed of 323 km/h, and, best of all, it comes exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission. Fittingly, only 991 will be made.
Jaguar F-TYPE SVR
How much crazier can the F-TYPE get? Quite a bit, apparently. The first to wear the SVR badge signalling an even higher level of performance, this two-seater uses an evolved form of the supercharged 5.0-litre engine producing 575 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. To cope with all the additional output, the air intakes in the front bumper have been enlarged and the hood vents reshaped for additional cooling. A lighter (and louder) titanium exhaust is standard shedding 16 kilograms from the car’s total weight.
Volkswagen T-Cross Breeze
Is a convertible SUV the next big thing? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, even if VW did unveil a topless utility vehicle concept that supposedly teases what their next small crossover will look like. The Polo-sized T-Cross is fitted with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder powering the front wheels, mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic.
The electrics are coming in from Hyundai in full force, with the automaker introducing three versions of this green automobile ranging from a hybrid to a full EV. Taking aim at the Toyota Prius, the IONIQ is “an important milestone of Hyundai Motor’s sustainability strategy.” Not all specifications have yet been released, but we do know IONIQ Hybrid makes 139 net horsepower, the Plug-in, 118 horsepower, and the Electric has an estimated range of over 250 kilometres.