The Geneva motor show – Salon International de l’Auto to the locals – is arguably the highlight of the global automotive calendar.
Jez, Matt, Alborz and Tim will be live in Geneva from March 4 to bring you all the news and major unveilings from the show floor, as well as exclusive stories from behind the scenes.
To get you revved up for Geneva 2014, we’ve compiled a comprehensive preview of the cars sure to draw the crowds over the 11-day show.
The wait for Audi’s long-rumoured S1 pocket-rocket is finally over. The city-sized sports car’s 2.0-litre turbo engine packs a bigger punch than the Golf GTI, producing 170kW and 370Nm, and propelling the all-wheel-drive hot-hatch to triple figures in 5.8 seconds. Australian sales commence in the third quarter of the year from approximately $50K.
Read more about the Audi S1.
Audi S3 Cabriolet
The first-ever S3 Cabriolet expands Audi’s A3-based performance range to three, joining the traditional S3 hatch and the new S3 sedan. Its turbocharged 2.0-litre engine produces 221kW (down-tuned to 206kW for our ‘hot-weather’ climate) and 380Nm and sprints from 0-100km/h in 5.4 seconds. The world’s hottest compact convertible will reach our market in the final quarter of 2014 priced close to $75K.
Read more about the Audi S3 Cabriolet.
The third-generation Audi TT won’t stray far from its recognisable sports coupe formula judging by design sketches released ahead of its unveiling. Expect a sharper front-end, more angular rear and a steeply sloping roofline to combine with slim headlights, six-point grille, bold air intakes and flared wheel arches. The new TT should arrive in Australia in late 2014.
Read more about the Audi TT.
BMW 2 Series Active Tourer
The BMW 2 Series Active Tourer becomes the luxury German car maker’s first-ever front-wheel-drive production vehicle. Also the brand’s first model to be powered by a three-cylinder engine and its first compact MPV, the Active Tourer has its sights firmly set on stealing sales from the popular Mercedes-Benz B-Class. BMW Australia expects it to reach our shores in late 2014.
Read more about the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer.
BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe
The four-door hatch-backed Gran Coupe joins the regular Coupe and Convertible variants in BMW’s new 4 Series line-up. It shares its exterior dimensions with the Coupe but offers a 35L-larger boot, matching the 3 Series sedan at 480L. The Gran Coupe hits Australian showrooms in June.
Read more about the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe.
The Citroen C1 is the first of the PSA-Toyota alliance city car triplets. It features a boldly styled “smiling” front end, with high-set oval main lamps and slimmer running lights positioned above in a similar vein to the Nissan Juke. It will be available in three- and five-door body styles – though not in Australia, with the local importer showing no interest in the pint-sized model.
Read more about the Citroen C1.
Citroen C4 Cactus
It looks quirkier than most concepts but the Citroen C4 Cactus is every bit a production car. The sub-compact French crossover features unique plastic ‘Airbumps’ to protect its panels from low-impact knocks and super-frugal petrol and diesel powertrains claiming consumption as low as 3.1L/100km. Best of all, it’s confirmed for Australia, and could reach our shores before the end of the year.
Read more about the Citroen C4 Cactus.
Ferrari California T
The California T is Ferrari’s first turbocharged production car in more than 20 years. It’s powered by a 412kW/755Nm 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8, representing a whopping 52kW/250Nm boost over the naturally aspirated 4.3-litre V8 of its predecessor. Australian deliveries of the 3.6sec 0-100km, circa-$460K California T will commence in the final quarter of 2014.
Read more about the Ferrari California T.
Fiat Panda Cross
If you think the standard Panda isn’t tough enough and doesn’t have quite enough ‘squircles’, the Fiat Panda Cross may be for you. The Italian brand’s new four-wheel-drive city SUV boasts rough-and-tumble styling cues, improved approach and departure angles and hard-wearing body cladding. It’s not destined for our shores, though, with Fiat Australia sticking with front-drive Pandas only.
Read more about the Fiat Panda Cross.
Ford Focus facelift
New 1.5-litre turbo petrol and diesel engines, retuned suspension and steering, and enhanced connectivity and driver assist features headline the upgrades to the facelifted Ford Focus. Fresh styling also features, including the brand’s now-signature multi-slat trapezoidal grille and a redesigned instrument cluster, dashboard and centre stack. Expect it in Australia around mid-2015.
Read more about the Ford Focus facelift.
Honda Civic Type R concept
The aggressively styled Civic Type R concept will give Honda fans their best look yet at the new hot-hatch that’s due to launch in 2015. Dubbed a “racing car for the road”, the concept’s sporty body kit boasts an oversized rear wing, quad exhaust outlets in a purposeful diffuser and heavily flared and ventilated wheel arches.
Read more about the Honda Civic Type R concept.
Hyundai Intrado concept
The Intrado concept embracess Hyundai’s evolved ‘Fluidic Sclupture 2.0’ design language, giving a possible preview to the styling of the next-generation ix35. The futuristic concept teams a carbonfibre-reinforced structure with a hydrogen fuel cell propulsion system, making it lightweight and clean emitting.
Read more about the Hyundai Intrado concept.
Hyundai PassoCorto concept
Hyundai told a group of Italian design students to create a car for Gen Y buyers. The result? The 199kW twin-turbo mid-engined two-seat PassoCorto concept. Good result. Positively, Hyundai says the design project provides a vision for how a future lightweight Hyundai sports car might look. Consider our fingers crossed.
Read more about the Hyundai PassoCorto concept.
Jeep sub-compact SUV
The smallest vehicle to wear the Jeep badge remains one of the biggest mysteries of the show just days out from its unveiling. Without teaser shots or leaks, spy shots like the one above give us our best look so far at the as-yet-unnamed baby SUV. Twinned with the upcoming Fiat 500X, Jeep promises the new model will still be worthy of the brand’s hardcore ‘trail-rated’ badge when it launches here in 2015.
Read more about the Jeep's baby SUV.
Koenigsegg Agera One:1
Aiming to humble the mighty Bugatti Veyron, the Koenigsegg Agera One:1 boasts an unprecedented set of performance claims. Its name proudly alludes to its power-to-weight ratio, claiming a 1340hp (1000kW) output and a 1340kg kerb weight. The brand’s founder says the One:1 has a 450km/h top speed in its sights, enough to smash the Veyron’s 431km/h record.
Read more about the Koenigsegg Agera One:1.
The Lamborghini Huracan has big shoes to fill, replacing the most successful raging bull of all time, the Gallardo. Helping its cause is an uprated 448kW/560Nm 5.2-litre V10 that claims 0-100km/h in 3.2 seconds, a lightweight aluminium/carbonfibre chassis, and styling influenced by the Aventador and Sesto Elemento supercars.
Read more about the Lamborghini Huracan.
Mazda Hazumi concept
It’s called the Hazumi but Mazda’s Geneva concept will give an accurate impression of the design of the third-generation Mazda 2 city car that will reach Australian showrooms in 2015. Embracing the ‘Kodo’ design language, the concept will sport a sharply styled face, wedge-shaped profile and compact overall proportions.
Read more about the Mazda Hazumi concept.
Based on McLaren’s entry-level MP4-12C, the 650S will sit between that car and the exotic P1 hypercar in the British car maker’s expanding line-up. The name indicates the car’s power output – 650PS, or 478kW, a jump of 37kW over the MP4-12C. It also promises to be more luxury focused, claiming “saloon-like” levels of interior comfort.
Read more about the McLaren 650S.
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate
Mercedes will reveal the second piece of the all-new C-Class puzzle when it takes the wraps off the new Estate body style in Geneva. The front of the load-lugging wagon will mirror that of the sedan, while the rear styling is no secret either after our spy photographers snapped undisguised shots of the new model late last year.
Read more about the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate.
Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe
The all-new Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe will feature a world-first curve tilting function claiming to allow the luxury two-door to lean into corners like a motorcyclist. The system is a feature of the car’s Magic Body Control suspension, which is just one of the many high-tech elements it borrows from the S-Class limousine. Local deliveries begin in the final quarter of 2014.
Read more about the Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe.
Mini Clubman concept
The Mini Clubman concept previews the British brand’s upcoming unconventional six-door van and gives us our best look yet at its new Golf-hunting five-door hatchback. The original Clubman’s rear barn doors remain but the signature right-side rear-hinged ‘club door’ makes way for conventional front-hinged rear doors on both sides. Expect it here in 2015, a few months after the five-door in late 2014.
Read more about the Mini Clubman concept.
Nissan Juke facelift
Many will welcome a facelift for Nissan’s polarising Juke, though don’t expect dramatic design changes from the updated compact crossover. A revised front end and a more muscular rear will feature, while a new entry-level 1.2-litre turbo engine is tipped to find its way under the bonnet.
Read more about the Nissan Juke.
Opel Astra OPC Extreme
It may look more racecar than road car, but the street-legal Opel Astra OPC Extreme will enter a low-volume production run follow its Geneva debut. The fastest Astra ever produces “over 300hp” (244kW plus) from its 2.0-litre turbo engine, and weighs 100kg less than the standard OPC thanks to extensive use of carbonfibre. Expect the Extreme to make mince meat of the regular OPC’s 6.0sec 0-100km/h benchmark.
Read more about the Opel Astra OPC Extreme.
The Peugeot 108 is the second of the Franco-Japanese alliance’s sub-compact city car trio. The pug-nosed Pug slots below the 208 hatchback to take on the likes of the Fiat 500 and Volkswagen Up! And unlike the other two thirds of the partnership, Peugeot Australia is considering a local launch for the new sub-3.5-metre model.
Read more about the Peugeot 108.
Qoros 3 hatch
The Qoros 3 hatch could be China’s first genuine rival for the likes of the Volkswagen Golf and other leading European small cars. The five-door is based on the same modular platform as the 3 sedan, which recorded the highest crash-test score of any vehicle tested by Euro NCAP in 2013. A turbo engine, dual-clutch transmission and high-tech interior add further interest to the hatchback’s unveiling.
Read more about the Qoros 3 hatch.
Range Rover Evoque Autobiography
The Evoque Autobiography introduces new levels of power and equipment and debuts Range Rover’s new smartphone-linked app-based connectivity system. The sporty Dynamic variant gets an uprated 210kW/400Nm 2.0-litre turbo engine, along with revised steering, suspension and brakes, among other enhancements. Strong overseas demand means Australian customers will have to wait until the end of 2015, however.
Read more about the Range Rover Evoque Autobiography.
The new Twingo is the car that’s got the whole CarAdvice office talking. Renault’s new sub-compact city car combines super-cute looks with supercar-style running gear – the rear-mounted engine driving the rear wheels. Don’t get your hopes up too much though. Renault Australia says “it’s not looking very likely” for our market at this stage.
Read more about the Renault Twingo.
Skoda VisionC concept
Bearing more than a slight resemblance to the Audi A7 Sportback, the Skoda VisionC concept could preview a possible coupe-styled five-door liftback from the Czech manufacturer. Brandishing “the next stage in the development of Skoda design language”, rumours suggest a production version of the MQB-based model may launch as early as 2016.
Read more about the Skoda VisionC concept.
Subaru Viziv 2 concept
The Viziv 2 concept will give an insight into Subaru’s latest vision for a future crossover vehicle. A single teaser sketch suggests of the updated high-riding two-door concept will feature fresh styling, including revised ‘hawk-eye’ LED headlights, hexagonal radiator grille, circular fog lights with hexagonal inlay, and angular front air intakes.
Read more about the Subaru Viziv 2 concept.
The Toyota Aygo is the third and final piece of the tiny trio puzzle, and remains shrouded in the most mystery. The Japanese manufacturer is yet to reveal its second-gen city car, though like its siblings it’s expected to be powered exclusively by three-cylinder engines. Toyota Australia says the Aygo won’t slot beneath the Yaris in our market, however.
Read more about the Toyota Aygo.
Volkswagen Golf GTE
Tagged a sporty plug-in hybrid, the Volkswagen Golf GTE will join the existing GTI and GTD variants in the Mk7 hatchback range. Combined outputs of 150kW and 350Nm from its turbocharged 1.4-litre petrol engine and electric motor motivate it to triple figures in 7.6 seconds, while Volkswagen claims ultra-frugal economy of just 1.5L/100km.
Read more about the Volkswagen Golf GTE.
Volkswagen Polo facelift
A subtle facelift masks massive mechanical and technological enhancements for the updated Volkswagen Polo. Three-cylinder engines, electro-mechanical steering, variable suspension, autonomous emergency braking and adaptive cruise control all debut in the already class-leading city car. The BlueMotion, BlueGT, CrossPolo and GTI variants also benefit from the mid-life upgrade.
Read more about the Volkswagen Polo facelift.
Volkswagen Scirocco facelift
The addition of the new 2.0-litre turbo engine from the Audi S3 and Golf R means a boost to 221kW (likely detuned to 206kW for Australia) and 380Nm for the updated Volkswagen Scirocco R. Faster acceleration, lower fuel consumption, fresh styling and new tech promise to enhance the Golf-based coupe’s appeal even further when it reaches Australia in early 2015.
Read more about the Volkswagen Scirocco facelift.
Volkswagen T-Roc concept
The T-Roc concept previews Volkswagen’s vision for a Golf-sized crossover to slot between the pint-sized Taigun and larger Tiguan SUVs. Mixing Evoque-inspired styling with a 911 Targa-esque removable roof and the engine from the new Golf GTD, rumours suggest a toned-down version of the three-door show car could reach showrooms sometime after the launch of its suspected sibling, the Audi Q1, in 2016.
Read more about the Volkswagen T-Roc concept.
Volvo Concept Estate
The Concept Estate is the third and final member of Volvo’s new-generation concept car family. Bearing the same lengthy bonnet, T-shaped headlights, broad oblong-shaped grille and smooth bumper treatment of its predecessors, the three-door shooting brake concept previews design elements that will influence the second-gen XC90 that launches later this year.
Read more about the Volvo Concept Estate.