The Frankfurt motor show – Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung to the locals – is one of the highlights of the global automotive calendar.
Alternating biennially with the Paris motor show, Frankfurt looks set to host a memorable event in 2013 as dozens of production and concept vehicles are presented to the press and the public for the first time.
CarAdvice will be live in Frankfurt from September 10 to bring you all the news and major unveilings, as well as exclusive stories from behind the scenes.
To get you revved up for Frankfurt 2013, we’ve compiled a comprehensive preview of the cars sure to draw the crowds over the 13-day show.
Audi Quattro Sport concept
Audi will move another step closer to launching a modern-day successor to its famous all-wheel-drive coupe when it unveils the Quattro Sport concept.
Teaming a 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 with an electric motor for a combined system output of 515kW and 880Nm, the 4.6m-long 1850kg Quattro Sport coupe launches from 0-100km/h in 3.7 seconds and on to a top speed of 305km/h.
Read more on the Audi Quattro Sport concept.
BMW will break new ground when it takes the covers off its first plug-in hybrid sports car, the i8.
Unmistakeable with its front-hinged scissor doors, overlapping body panels and LED headlights and tail-lights, the 266kW/570Nm coupe will be quicker to 100km/h than an M3 (4.5 seconds) and significantly more fuel efficient than a Prius (2.5L/100km) when it arrives in Australia in the second half of 2014.
Read more on the BMW i8.
Citroen Cactus concept
Don’t be fooled into thinking the compressed-air-powered Citroen Cactus is just another wacky French concept.
CarAdvice’s spy photographers captured a prototype of the Cactus looking decidedly production-ready undergoing hot-weather testing, suggesting development of the model is already well advanced.
It remains to be seen if the concept’s protective ‘air bump’ door and bumper panels, all-digital driver interface and ceiling-mounted passenger airbag will make the leap from show to showroom.
Read more on the Citroen Cactus concept.
Ferrari 458 Speciale
The 458 Speciale (pictured top) brings unprecedented speed to Ferrari’s V8-powered supercar as well as moveable aerodynamics that will be applied to future models.
An uprated version of the 458 Italia’s 4.5-litre V8 produces 445kW at 9000rpm and 540Nm at 6000rpm, catapulting the Speciale from 0-100km/h in 3.0 seconds, while active front and rear flaps help make it the most aerodynamically efficient production Ferrari in history.
Read more on the Ferrari 458 Speciale.
Infiniti Q30 concept
The Infiniti Q30 concept unveiled at Frankfurt will give us a clear idea of what to expect from the Japanese manufacturer’s compact Mercedes-Benz A-Class rival that’s due to launch internationally in late 2014 and locally in early 2015.
Claiming to fuse coupe, hatch and crossover body styles, the Q30 production car is expected to take full advantage of Infiniti’s partnership with Mercedes, sharing both underpinnings and turbocharged four-cylinder engines with the German brand.
Read more on the Infiniti Q30 concept.
Jaguar C-X17 concept
Jaguar still won’t officially confirm it, but the C-X17 concept previews the luxury British brand’s first-ever crossover model, due to launch by 2016.
Channelling the XJ at the front and the F-Type at the rear, official images suggest Jaguar’s design language will make a neat transition to the new bodystyle, which incorporates athletic lines, a slim greenhouse and powerful rear haunches.
Read more on the Jaguar C-X17 concept.
Lexus LF-NX concept
The dramatic Lexus LF-NX concept previews the Japanese luxury brand’s forthcoming NX mid-sized SUV that’s headed for production in 2014.
For showrooms, Lexus’ long-awaited answer to the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Range Rover Evoque will be toned down from the aggressively styled concept and will be offered with both a hybrid powertrain and a new 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine.
Read more on the Lexus LF-NX concept.
Mercedes-Benz will expand its small car line-up to four models with the GLA-Class baby SUV.
Looking like a jacked-up version of the A-Class hatchback with which it shares its basic architecture, the GLA will reach Australian showrooms in the second quarter of 2014 offering front- and all-wheel-drive variants and a circa-$45,000 starting price.
Read more on the Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class.
Nissan’s third-generation X-Trail will trade the nameplate’s traditional boxy proportions for more conventional soft-roader curves when it debuts in Frankfurt.
Due in Australia in mid 2014, the new X-Trail is set to become the sole seven-seater in the Japanese manufacturer’s mid-sized SUV range, with the Dualis+2 reportedly axed from the line-up.
Read more on the Nissan X-Trail.
Volvo Coupe Concept
Volvo’s P1800-inspired Concept Coupe will give us our first look at the Swedish manufacturer’s assertive new design language that’s set to debut on the all-new XC90 due to launch late next year.
Volvo says the elegant coupe is the first of three concept vehicles that will reveal the design potential of the company’s new Scalable Product Architecture, which is destined to underpin its next-generation medium and large passenger cars and SUVs.
Read more on the Volvo Coupe Concept.
Other highlights of the 2013 Frankfurt motor show: