For 10 days of March, Geneva is literally the only place to be for those either working in the automotive industry or simply passionate about cars. With a reported total of 180 World and European premieres being presented by the 260 exhibitors, we provide a round-up of our highlights.
Sir Henry Royce famously urged his employees to strive for perfection in all that they did – and “to take the best that exists and make it better”. Well, today’s Rolls-Royce Motor Cars certainly remain true to that legacy, with the unveiling of the Phantom Series II maintaining the brand’s status as the pinnacle of luxury motoring. The trio on display included the Phantom Saloon, Phantom Drophead Coupé and Phantom Coupé. All had been thoughtfully updated with contemporary yet timeless design enhancements and significant improvements to the car’s drive-train, ease-of-use and connectivity. Aside from the headlining Phantom’s, a very special Rolls-Royce Ghost was also winning admirers in the company’s exclusive on-stand guest lounge. Clients, dealers and media guests were delighted by the presentation of one of the first examples of a two-tone Rolls-Royce Ghost, a bespoke option being offered for the first time this year, following the immense popularity of two-tone Phantom models.
Bentley was out in force at the Motor Show gaining much attention with their lighter weight and more fuel efficient V8 Continental GT models, but stealing the spotlight was their new SUV concept, the EXP 9 F. The Company’s designers and engineers have created a compelling new take on the Grand Touring Bentley – a vehicle that feels equally at home at an opera gala performance, on the sand dunes and the overtaking lane of the autobahn. Unmistakably a Bentley, yet a Bentley like none before it – the EXP 9 F could herald a third Bentley model-line alongside the bespoke Mulsanne and the high performance Continental GT, GTC and Flying Spur. We cannot help but fall in love with the interior, but it has to be said that unfortunately the exterior clearly has a long way to go, lets hope they can get that right before releasing it.
There was also most certainly no shortage of Hyper-cars out on display; including the world’s fastest roadster, the Bugatti Grand Sport Vittesse, the dificult to pronounce Pagani ‘Huayra,’ the obscenely radical looking Lamborghini Aventador J and the latest incarnation of the Koenigsegg Agera-R.
Another firm favourite had to be the new style 911, which regardless of the controversial electrically assisted steering system, is living proof that subtle refinement has proven to be one of the most successful automotive business strategies, clearly working wonders for their ongoing stella growth performance.
If customisation is your thing then there were also plenty of professional modification outfits exhibiting, this Lumma designs BMW 6-series winning our vote of appreciate amongst the countless others.
Although trying to squeeze a shot of everything in is nigh on impossible, we simply had to include this absolutely stonkin’ rendition of the McLaren MP4-12C, modified by Porsche specialists Gemballa, which had wheels to die for and body mods that make the standard version look unfinished. Besides this, I was pleasantly surprised to see that BMW have launched a saloon version of their popular 6-series, which somehow managed to squeeze in to a practically non-existent gap in to their line-up
Last but not least a huge thanks to Clive Sutton for suppling all the photos www.clivesutton.co.uk and if you still have enough time in your diaries, the Motor Show is still ongoing until 18th March