Highlights from the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show
Held in Frankfurt, Germany, the bi-annual International Motor Show (IAA) is a feast for the senses. This year, a greater number of important conceptual and production vehicles debuted, reflecting the technological race all automakers are striving to win as well as the consolidation of wealth across societies. Of the vehicles shown in Frankfurt am Main, these are the 25 most significant to Americans.
2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio Verde
Alfa Romeo debuted a new performance-oriented version of its upcoming Giulia luxury sport sedan, and it wears a name few people can spell let alone pronounce: Quadrifoglio Verde. Equipped with a twin-turbo, 510-horsepower, 3.0-liter V-6 engine, the Giulia GV laps the Nurburgring circuit in a claimed 7 minutes, 39 seconds. That’s 13 seconds quicker than a BMW M4.
2017 Audi A4
Larger, lighter, more powerful, and more efficient than the outgoing model, the redesigned Audi A4 might look familiar, but under the sheetmetal it takes a big step forward. Turbocharged gasoline and diesel engines are on the menu, and the unloved continuously variable transmission (CVT) is gone. New safety and infotainment technologies debut, including Audi Virtual Cockpit instrumentation and Audi Smartphone Integration technology.
2017 Audi A4 Preview
Audi E-tron Quattro Concept
Tesla sets the standard for electrified mobility, and Audi responds with the E-tron Quattro Concept, which previews technology destined for production in early 2018. Three electric motors produce up to 496 horsepower and 590 lb.-ft. of torque, resulting in acceleration to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds, according to Audi. Range measures 311 mi. on the European cycle, and Audi says the powertrain is compatible with wireless induction charging and 150 kW DC Fast Charge units.
2017 Bentley Bentayga
In case you hadn’t heard, Bentley is building an SUV. Named Bentayga, the automaker claims that it is the fastest, most powerful, most luxurious, and most exclusive SUV in the world. A twin-turbocharged W-12 engine spitting out 600 horsepower and 663 lb.-ft. of torque sure helps to back up that statement.
2017 BMW 3 Series Plug-in
Don’t look for the new BMW 330e at your local dealership. Ask for it, because it looks the same except for a charging port door on the front left fender. A turbocharged 4-cylinder engine and an electric motor together make 248 horsepower, delivered to the rear wheels. Range is an estimated 25 miles, and 60 mph arrives in a claimed 6.1 seconds.
2016 BMW 7 Series
BMW’s flagship sedan is redesigned, employing Carbon Core vehicle architecture for its strength and lightness. Innovations include touch-sensing iDrive infotainment with gesture control, remote autonomous parking capability, an active side-collision protection system, and front-crossing traffic technology. A 740e plug-in hybrid version delivers 23 miles of pure EV range and more than 300 horsepower.
2016 BMW 7 Series Preview
2016 BMW X1
An entry-level luxury crossover SUV, the second-generation X1 arrives with mature styling, more interior space for people and cargo, and the latest in safety and infotainment technologies. A 228-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder is the only engine offering at launch, and an M Sport version arrives soon.
2016 BMW X1 Preview
2016 Ferrari 488 Spyder
Ferrari’s 458 Italia Spyder is cancelled, replaced by this new 488 Spyder. Torsional rigidity is up nearly 25%, while the twin-turbocharged, 3.9-liter V-8 engine whips up 661 horsepower and 560 lb.-ft. of torque. A 7-speed dual-clutch transmission accelerates the 488 Spyder to 60 mph in just over 3 seconds, according to Ferrari, while the power-retractable hardtop drops in 14 seconds.
2017 Infiniti Q30
Engineered in partnership with Mercedes-Benz, the Infiniti Q30 represents the new entry point to Nissan’s luxury division. The new Q’s turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine makes 208 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque, matching the Mercedes-Benz GLA250 with which it shares the power plant. A 7-speed dual-clutch transmission powers the front wheels, and all-wheel drive (AWD) is an option. The AWD model may adopt the QX30 name for the U.S. market.
2017 Jaguar F-Pace
Jaguar’s new F-Pace SUV is going to be a huge hit. Sized for 5 people, and engineered to deliver impressive handling on pavement yet provide decent off-roading capability, the F-Pace is powered by a supercharged V-6 engine yanked out of the F-Type sports car. A diesel is coming along for the ride, too. Jaguar also showcases its latest InControl infotainment systems in the F-Pace.
2017 Jaguar F-Pace Preview
2017 Kia Sportage
Representing a bold evolution of the current Sportage’s design, the new 2017 model is plopped onto the same platform as the 2016 Hyundai Tucson. Expect a turbocharged, 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine making 175 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque, front-wheel or all-wheel drive, improved driving dynamics, and the latest in safety and infotainment technologies.
2016 Lamborghini Huracan LP 610-4 Spyder
Replacing the discontinued Gallardo Spyder, the new Huracan LP 610-4 employs a 602-horsepower, 5.2-liter V-10 engine and a 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox to accelerate to 60 mph in about 3.3 seconds, the automaker says. The roof folds down in 17 seconds. These figures are slower than the new Ferrari 488 Spyder, but what the heck, let’s have some dudes with diplomatic immunity settle this on the streets of Beverly Hills.
Mazda Koeru 5 Concept
With 5-passenger seating and a wheelbase that matches the current Mazda CX-5, the Mazda Koeru 5 Concept likely provides more than just a hint of the next-generation CX-5, which should arrive for the 2018 model year. However, you can also expect to see similar design cues on the new 2017 Mazda CX-9 when it debuts later this year at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
2017 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Cabriolet
Thanks to the new S-Class Cabriolet’s innovative AirCap system, which is designed to reduce cabin buffeting while the top is down, even Donald Trump could fearlessly pilot this automobile. The first S-Class convertible in decades, the S550 and Mercedes-AMG S63 Cabriolet models also come with a new Thermotronic climate system designed to keep everyone comfortable in almost any kind of weather.
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe
Longer, wider, and lighter than the car it replaces, the redesigned C-Class Coupe also boasts improved performance and efficiency. A turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine is installed in the C300 and C300 4Matic, while the Mercedes-AMG C63 Coupe gets a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 cranking out 469 to 503 horsepower, depending on the application. New safety, infotainment, and convenience features also debut for this model.
2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe Preview
2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class
Goodbye, boxy GLK-Class. Hello, svelte new GLC-Class. You might associate “GLC” with a Great Little Car that Mazda once built, but that’s ancient history. This new GLC-Class sets the stage for a remake of the Mercedes-Benz fleet of SUVs. It arrives in GLC300 format, rocking a turbocharged, 241-horsepower 4-cylinder engine. A 4Matic AWD system is optional, and a plug-in hybrid version is coming soon.
2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class Preview
Mercedes-Benz Concept Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile (IAA)
This futuristic concept is designed to showcase how active aerodynamics can transform an elegant 4-door luxury sedan into a hyper-efficient arrow that slices through the atmosphere. A plug-in hybrid with 41 mi. of maximum range in Active Aero mode, it boasts a 0.19 coefficient of drag at 50 mph. That’s a mere 0.04 improvement over the new 2017 Audi A4, so how impressive is it, really?
2016 Mini Clubman
You’re looking at the largest Mini in history, a 5-passenger wagon with four normal doors and two unconventional barn-style cargo doors around back. Cooper and Cooper S models will be available at first, equipped with turbocharged engines and manual or automatic transmissions. Maximum cargo capacity measures 47.9 cu. ft.
2016 Mini Clubman Preview
2016 Porsche 911 Carrera
Porsche updates the 2016 911 Carrera in numerous ways, but most important is the new turbocharged, 3.0-liter 6-cylinder engine that is now standard. More powerful and efficient, it helps the Carrera S rip to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds and to 193 mph, according to the automaker. Automatic engine start/stop, new driver-selected driving modes, optional rear-axle steering, expanded safety technologies, and a new infotainment system also arrive for 2016.
Porsche Mission E Concept
Here’s another electric car taking aim at the Tesla Model S. Porsche’s solution makes 590 horsepower from two electric motors that create a torque-vectoring AWD system. Acceleration to 60 mph takes a claimed 3.5 seconds, and the Mission E Concept is expected to provide 311 miles of driving range on the European cycle. Perhaps more interesting is the car’s virtual instrumentation with eye-tracking capability, mood perception, and holographic controls.
2016 Rolls-Royce Dawn
A spiritual successor to the limited-production Silver Dawn series built during the early 1950s, the new Rolls-Royce Dawn is based on the same platform as the Ghost and Wraith. Claimed to be the quietest convertible ever made when the top is raised, the Dawn’s convertible roof drops in 22 seconds. A 6.6-liter, twin-turbocharged V-12 engine stands at the ready to please the world’s most discerning customers, as does an infotainment system with handwriting recognition for Latin, Arabic, Mandarin, and other languages.
2016 Smart Fortwo Convertible
At the opposite end of the open-air continuum from the Rolls-Royce Dawn, the Smart Fortwo Convertible debuts with a roof that slides back targa-style or drops completely. The 1.0-liter 3-cylinder is the largest engine, but not the most powerful. That distinction falls to the turbocharged, 0.9-liter 3-cylinder making 71 horsepower.
2016 Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport
Built to celebrate the GTI’s 40th anniversary in Europe, the new GTI Clubsport is not coming to America. This most powerful production GTI ever built produces 261 horsepower, or 286 horsepower for up to 10 seconds when the driver activates the overboost function. According to VW, acceleration to 60 mph takes 6 seconds, maximum.
2017 Volkswagen Tiguan
With the redesigned 2017 Tiguan, Volkswagen launches a 3-SUV offensive in America that will include a smaller model and a larger model. The new Tiguan will be a long-wheelbase version of what you see in the photo, adding passenger space and cargo room compared with the current model. Expect improved safety, too, along with greater off-roading capability and the latest in infotainment systems.