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by Tim Beissmann

Four design concepts based on the all-new Volkswagen Up! have been previewed ahead of their unveiling at this week’s Geneva motor show.

First up is the Swiss Up! concept. A tribute to the motor show’s host country, Volkswagen says the Up! is as versatile as a Swiss Army knife. Reflecting the colours of the Swiss flag, the concept sports red paint with contrasting white mirror caps and a white dashboard. The front seatbacks are finished with a leather band, provided for storing a pocket knife if the driver so desires.

Next is the Winter Up!, a concept designed for the ski slopes. Based on the Cross Up! concept from last year’s Frankfurt motor show, the Winter Up! features a raised ride height, underbody protection and electronic stability control with electronic differential lock to increase its ability in slippery conditions. The Winter Up! is finished in white and blue paint, and is fitted with snowboards on the roof.

Third is the X Up!, a light car designed for late-night expeditions. Again based on the Cross Up!, the X Up! is equipped with a roof box with integrated searchlights. The burnt orange exterior is complemented on the inside with two tone trim inserts and hand-stitched logos.

Finally there’s the Cargo Up! concept, a delivery van based on the three-door variant of the city car. With the rear seat removed the Cargo Up! offers a 1400-litre load space and a 426kg payload. The ride-height is boosted and underbody protection is included to increase its capability around pot-holed streets. Plexiglass separates the driver from the cargo, while painted rear windows keep the cargo discreet.

The four new Volkswagen Up! concepts will debut alongside the five-door Up! production car in Geneva on Wednesday. The three- and five-door Up! variants will go on sale in Australia late in 2012.

Also headed for Geneva is the latest version of the Volkswagen Cross Coupe concept. First unveiled at last year’s Tokyo motor show with a petrol-electric plug-in powertrain, the updated concept teams a diesel engine with two electric motors. The result is a total power output of 225kW, a top speed of 220km/h, and a staggeringly low combined cycle fuel consumption rating of just 1.8 litres per 100km.

The Cross Coupe concept previews the new face of Volkswagen’s SUVs, which is set to emerge in 2014 with launch of the all-new Tiguan.