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    The Sunday Column - March 8, 2015

    • Talking About Geneva this week

    This past week saw the Geneva Motor Show come and go. A lot of writers consider Geneva as their favorites and I can see why. Geneva is where a number of new sports and supercars debut. Consider the lineup from this year,

    • Koenigsegg Agera RS
    • Koenigsegg Regera
    • Bentley EXP 10 Speed 6 Concept
    • SCG 003
    • Aston Martin Vulcan
    • Mercedes-AMG GT3
    • Morgan Aero 8
    • Porsche Cayman GT4
    • Porsche 911 GT3 RS

    Impressive to say in the least.

    However, Geneva isn't my favorite auto show to cover or to even see what's new. Part of this comes from the amount the amount of supercars that are shown. I get why automakers show them; it's eye candy and helps draw people into coming into visiting their exhibit. But for me, they don't evoke the feelings of excitement and want. Instead, its more of 'oh look, another supercar'. Maybe this feeling comes from the amount of sports and supercars that seem to make their way to Geneva. A debut doesn't seem as special as it once was.

    The other part comes from the vehicles that I'm interested in will only stay in Europe. For example the Kia Sportspace concept which is the brand's take of a midsize wagon and is quite sexy. The best part is Kia announcing that a production model will come out in 18 months, but it will not be coming to U.S. Not surprising to say in the least since wagons don't sell in the U.S. (aside from those who have a raised suspension to make them like crossovers). Another model which surprised me how much I liked was the Volkswagen Caddy. This small van competes with the likes of the Ford Transit Connect and Ram ProMaster City. It's a sharp looker and nicely appointed. Now we have heard talk about Volkswagen bringing this model to U.S., but that's all we know at this point.

    Geneva has the flash and spectacle many want, I just wish there was something else to it.

    Other Thoughts from the Week:

    • I'm wondering if Mercedes-Benz is trying to be all things to all people considering the introduction of the Metris van this week - especially considering the starting price of $29,945, making it the cheapest Mercedes-Benz model you can buy.
      • I still want to drive it though. I like the Sprinter and the Metris could be another one of my favorites. Also, needs a camper version.

      [*]Glad to see some information come out on the upcoming spider from Fiat. I just wished we had a hint of when we'll be seeing it.


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    I'm wondering if Mercedes-Benz is trying to be all things to all people considering the introduction of the Metris van this week - especially considering the starting price of $29,945, making it the cheapest Mercedes-Benz model you can buy.


    This isn't remotely a question. This mindset was revealed years ago when MB tried out the tagline "In a perfect world, there'd be a mercedes in every driveway".


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      Source: Maserati
      Press Release is on Page 2

      Maserati Levante debuts at the Geneva Motor Show
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      Source: Abarth

      Press Release is on Page 2

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      Source: Audi

      Press Release is on Page 2

      Stage debut: the new Audi Q2
      Compact SUV has emotional, powerful design and high level of functionality Infotainment and assistance systems from the full-size class Engines from 85 kW (116 hp) to 140 kW (190 hp), quattro drive

      Audi is revealing the new Audi Q2* at the Geneva International Motor Show. The compact SUV is an urban-type vehicle for everyday driving and recreation, uniting a progressive design with a high level of functionality. Connectivity, infotainment and assistance systems are on level of full-size class.

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      Highly connected
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      Simply functional
      The Q2 fulfills fundamental expectations of an SUV with a high entry, good visibility and a large luggage compartment (405 to 1,050 liters (14.3 - 37.1 cu ft) of capacity). The highlight is that the driver’s seat position is sporty and low in relation to the steering wheel like in an Audi sedan. Optional practical solutions are available such as a power tailgate and a three-way split rear bench backrests with cargo through-loading.
      Individual customization
      The Audi Q2 is as individual as its drivers – inside and out. Many equipment packages, exterior colors and expressive colors for interior trim and seat upholstery allow plenty of creative space for personal configuration. One option is the LED lighting package, in which the interior is staged in a particularly attractive way with illuminated trim elements.
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      The Q2 is launching with a selection of six different engines. Along with a 1.0-liter three-cylinder TFSI, two four-cylinder gasoline engines are being offered with 1.4 and 2.0 liters of displacement. In addition, three four-cylinder diesel engines are available with 1.6 and 2.0 liters of displacement. Their power output ranges from 85 kW (116 hp) to 140 kW (190 hp). As an alternative to the six-speed manual transmission, Audi also offers the S tronic dual clutch transmission with seven speeds for all engines. In the case of the top TDI and the 2.0 TFSI, a newly developed dual-clutch transmission is used, which has a new type of oil supply and reduced friction. Both engines may also be combined with a quattro permanent all-wheel drive system as standard equipment. Installed at the rear on the front-wheel drive versions is a semi-independent suspension, while the quattro models have a four-link suspension. Progressive steering is standard in all versions. It varies the steering gear ratio as a function of the steering input; the ratio is made more direct with large steering movements. Adaptive dampers are available as an option, as is the Audi drive select system with which drivers can set an individual characteristic for their Q2.
      Market launch
      The Audi Q2 launches on the European market in autumn 2016. Ordering begins mid-year for the compact SUV.
    • By William Maley
      Honda hasn't sold a Civic hatchback in U.S. since the 2001 to 2005 Si. Since then, Honda has only been giving us coupes and sedans. Europe meanwhile has been getting the Civic hatchback and it has grown into a sleek model that has many of us very jealous. But that will be changing with the next Civic hatchback. Honda has announced it would be coming to U.S. and we got our first peek into what it will look like at the Geneva Motor Show.
      The Civic Hatchback prototype follows along the same lines as the Civic concept from last year's New York auto show with a sporty appearance - blacked-out trim pieces, center mounted exhaust, and large wheels. But the basic shape lines up very closely with the current Civic sedan and coupe with a similar front and rear styling.
      Compared to the current Civic Hatchback, the Prototype is about 1.2 inches wider, 5.1 inches longer, and about a half-inch lower.
      No details were given on powertrains, but we wouldn't be surprised if the hatchback comes with the 2.0L four-cylinder and turbocharged 1.5L four-cylinder engines for the U.S.
      Honda will be building the Civic Hatchback at their Great Britain plant and export them to the U.S. later this year.

      Source: Honda

      Album: Geneva Motor Show: Honda Civic Prototype
      15 images 0 comments
      Press Release is on Page 2

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    • By William Maley
      Honda hasn't sold a Civic hatchback in U.S. since the 2001 to 2005 Si. Since then, Honda has only been giving us coupes and sedans. Europe meanwhile has been getting the Civic hatchback and it has grown into a sleek model that has many of us very jealous. But that will be changing with the next Civic hatchback. Honda has announced it would be coming to U.S. and we got our first peek into what it will look like at the Geneva Motor Show.
      The Civic Hatchback prototype follows along the same lines as the Civic concept from last year's New York auto show with a sporty appearance - blacked-out trim pieces, center mounted exhaust, and large wheels. But the basic shape lines up very closely with the current Civic sedan and coupe with a similar front and rear styling.
      Compared to the current Civic Hatchback, the Prototype is about 1.2 inches wider, 5.1 inches longer, and about a half-inch lower.
      No details were given on powertrains, but we wouldn't be surprised if the hatchback comes with the 2.0L four-cylinder and turbocharged 1.5L four-cylinder engines for the U.S.
      Honda will be building the Civic Hatchback at their Great Britain plant and export them to the U.S. later this year.

      Source: Honda

      Press Release is on Page 2

      Prototype of the next-generation Civic hatchback makes its global premiere at the 86th Geneva International Motor Show Assertive stance and distinctive new design establishes 10th generation as the sportiest Civic everLow, wide proportions and long wheelbase promise engaging driving dynamics while maximising interior space New Civic hatchback will be available in Europe early in 2017 and will be built at Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM)

      The next-generation Civic hatchback makes its global debut in prototype form at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show. The design of the prototype heralds a significant step-change from previous versions of Honda’s core European model, focusing on provocative design and rewarding driving dynamics.

      The all-new Civic hatchback will be 30 mm wider, 20 mm lower and 130 mm longer than the current generation. New larger and wider wheels and tyres give a feeling of an assured stance, while the long wheelbase, short overhangs and sleek cabin area further add to the dynamic feel of the exterior.
      At the front of the car, a short overhang with large air intakes presents a sharp and aggressive interpretation of Honda’s family face. LED headlights and daytime running lights flow from beneath the boldly sculpted bonnet into accentuated wheel arches.
      The sleek and swept-back body lines continue along the side of the car with a swage line that incorporates front and rear door handles before culminating in the distinctive C-shaped LED rear lights. A second, lower character line extends from behind the front wheels up through the doors and meets the rear wheel arches, emphasising the car’s dynamic forward-leaning stance. At the rear, the bumper incorporates angular creases and vents, designed to echo the aggressively styled nature of the rest of the car.
      Daisuke Tsutamori, Project Leader for the 10th generation Civic provided an insight into how the distinctive design was conceived and realised: “We knew that we needed to create a striking and stand-out exterior design that challenged conventional European compact styling while staying true to the original Civic’s core values; a marriage of distinctive and sporty design, rewarding driving dynamics and versatile practicality.”
      Designed and developed for the European market, the 10th generation Civic is scheduled for a European launch early in 2017. The five-door hatchback variant will be produced by Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM), and will be exported to global markets including the United States.
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