At Geneva Motor Show a Platform for Success (and Speed) Wall …

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Jaguar F-Type-fighter

At Geneva Motor Show, a for Success (and Speed)

. the center of international diplomacy, into action this after Russia intervened in much like Tampa the Shriners are in town. An expeditionary of additional bartenders was dispatched to key Large black sedans deployed in front of all the major

And it seems the managers of Palexpo the venue for the 2014 Geneva Show, might have up the thermostat to ward off the chill down everyone s spine. The in Ukraine bodes ill for the EU s fragile recovery on any number of fronts but acutely in the automotive segment, Western car makers have Russians growing buying (2.6 million units in Europe s second-largest market) and exclusive car makers such as Ferrari and Lamborghini have dealerships to better serve s car-obsessed, man-child oligarchs.

car makers including GM and Renault also invested billions in manufacturing, with joint at most of the country s 32 facilities. happens to those sales, investments and those jobs in a standoff over Ukraine—including sanctions and Russian retaliation—is to put it diplomatically. What is clear is the auto industry is at the center of the

A look at the starts of the show:

A SOLUTION // VOLVO CONCEPT / KOENIGSEGG ONE:1

If the Geneva Show is one sprawling metaphor for the of global entanglements, then two both Swedish, are demonstrating the of independence, even isolationism. owned at arm s length by the Chinese Geeley and flush with $11 in investment raised mostly in the market, will turn the in its product portfolio this using an all-new flexible of its own design.

This platform will no less than five new including the D-segment XC90 SUV this fall, as well as D-sized sedans, wagons and This retrenchment happens not a too soon; Volvo hasn t had a new in North America since

Volvo is now alone among European car makers in not having a auto-making parent or sibling to the costs of R D and procurement; theirs is much a lab experiment, to borrow a to see if such a model is viable in a consolidating industry.

What can t be is that for the moment, Volvo free to be as Volvo as it wants to be. In this week, the company the silk off its Concept Estate, a full-size shooting-brake design by the Frua-bodied P1800 of a half-century Dressed in umber and cinched at the the broad, cab-rearward, belt-high previews much of the company s new vocabulary, including the strong grille, the muscular haunches, the T-shaped LED headlamps and taillamps, and strength of proportion.

According to a familiar with the company, the is built off a production platform. is important because the Concept s sport-tourer hood (the distance) and its short front (proportions of a premium rear-drive will translate to production If that is true, Volvo s to make a lot of sexy cars.

than that, Volvo s direction finally looks it comes from somewhere. At a of growing statelessness in car design, s proposed design is exuberantly clear, modern, ineffably The Concept Estate gets my for Best Concept Car.

The other company is the ultraexotic Koenigsegg, based in Angelholm, Koenigsegg only makes a dozen cars a year. of scale typically drive makers to purchase character-essential such as transmissions and engines suppliers. Pagani, for example, its engines in crates from AMG.

McLaren receives gearboxes in a box from Graziano.

engineers, fabricates and assembles every part of their sports cars, from the dihedral synchrohelix door that allow the doors to like swan s wings, to the of the powertrain. Large parts of the exhaust are 3-D printed in house. the car s variable geometry turbochargers are

On Koenigsegg s stand this is the One:1, whose home-brewed twin-turbo V8 produces a world 1,360 brake horsepower hp, SAE), which is equal to one megawatt, enough power to up a small town.

As of Geneva the One:1 is quite comfortably at the top of the as the most powerful series-production automobile ever made, even the mind-bending Bugatti Super Sport, with hp on tap (a mere .895 MW). founder Christian von Koenigsegg the One:1—which weighs 1,360 and thus the ratio—will accelerate to 249 mph in 20 as quick and fast as just any Formula One car.

For self-evident reasons—i.e. 1 hp per kg and one-megawatt output—I the Koenigsegg One:1 the most car of the show. But it is also a testament to the allure of a product s story of

Sometimes when you want to go you have to go it alone.

A CHANCE FOR A // McLAREN 650S SPIDER / CALIFORNIA T

By 10 a.m. Tuesday, photographers camped out at the McLaren stand to the moment when the company pull the drapery from all understood to be the McLaren 650S a retractable hardtop version of s new coupe. However, we could see the orange Spider very under its car-show negligee of silk, and we could see that it exactly like the blue sitting naked beside it.

the proprieties must be observed.

is what mustn t be said: the 12C, launched at great in 2011 by a world leader in was a stumble; the 650S is its fast-tracked McLaren, in the person of its chief, One titan Ron Dennis, was never with the first car. He t alone.

Everybody could see the midengine berlinetta s styling had low T and the corked pitch of the turbocharged V8 t nearly thrilling enough. says McLaren product Mark Vinnels, the dynamics was dialed down a tick. We afraid of people hurting

McLaren s 650S reboot with the company s foundational a lightweight, tooled single-piece monocoque, with cast- and substructures front and rear. percent of the 650S s parts are from the 12C. The 650S s exterior panels are radically than the old car, with negative spaces interleaved and under the car, highlighted contrasting paint.

The highly form language links the to the company s new ultracar, the P1, which is efficient in cooling and downforce. The has 40% more down force at than the 12C.

As for the performance, the has been turned up. The twin-turbo puts out 641 hp and 500 pound-feet of torque. acceleration is 3 seconds flat to 62 mph and in 8.4 seconds, which is brisk. in part to standard carbon-ceramic curb weight is even a tick, to about 3,000

The Spider weighs 88 pounds (call it 3,100 pounds), but is svelte, going on slinky.

isn t alone in revising history at On the Ferrari stand the California T cover, a replacement for the wildly hotly debated California convertible that made its here in 2008. The unmentionable is that, while 70% of California were new to the brand and the atelier in is humming, purists didn t fall in love with the A front-V8, rear-drive grand We call those Corvettes here.

Jaguar F-Type-fighter

The accusations were the original California was overly and lacking durezza. Officially, voices don t exist, and yet Ferrari has them, and the new car answers.

The 2015 T is the first Ferrari since the F40 to use a engine, a 3.9-liter flat-crank, V8 pressurized by a pair of twin-scroll that, Ferrari engineers sound bravissimo honking the tuned, three-piece exhaust The turbo-8 s output is quoted as 553 hp and 557 of torque at 4,750 rpm, of 70 hp and 185 pound-feet over the previous s naturally aspirated 4.3-liter V8. to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds, a top speed of 196 mph.

faster, brawnier. The California T is what the doctor, or dentist,

SOMETHING TO BE SEEN // MASERATI CONCEPT

The last time stole the Geneva show was when the Maserati brothers off with the bunting. But the Modena, luxury car builder—celebrating 100 years in out) of business—laid them in the with the Alfieri Concept. to your pagan gods the company s Porsche 911/Jaguar fighter, due in 2016, will anything like this drama-drenched, wallet-molesting gran

Maserati designers credited the Maserati A6 GCS-53 race car as I suggest it was something far older, and Roman—perhaps a chariot.

Thanks to the of the Quattroporte and introduction of the Maserati sedan, Maserati had a stellar in 2013, with global more than doubling to cars. The weakness is coupes, anything to sell against the 911. The Alfieri is right size-wise (180.7 inches), a wheelbase 9.5 inches shorter inches) than a GranTurismo.

the Alfieri Concept arrived at the packing the 4.7-liter V8 and six-speed transaxle from the GranTurismo, s next personal luxury car could come with a variety of engines drawn all provinces of the Fiat and Ferrari

Alfieri, by the way, was one of the Maserati but he doesn t know what to the bunting.

THE RACE IS ON // PORSCHE 919

For racing fans, Christmas is In June, Porsche will to the top-tier prototype category at the 24 of Le Mans. This year s will witness an epic, Freudian contest between two funded VW-AG siblings: the champion, Audi, which has owned the race for more a decade; and Porsche, which has a 16 overall championships and whose whose soul is immortally to the great race.

Officially and says Porsche LMP1 principal Friedrich Enzinger, the from VW supremo Ferdinand has been, Boys, have at it, or to that effect. No favorites and no orders, except the usual: Don t each other out.

Porsche has no intention of rolling That much is evident in the s new 919 Hybrid Le Mans Prototype, debuted in Geneva this to much slacking of jaws. in the sweeping, mission-critical bodywork and under the vertical stabilizer fin is a turbocharged V4 engine spooling to rpm.


Mighty Maus.

In to the V4 s furious 500 hp or so, the 919 has a large motor/generator on the axle, providing an unspecified of electric horsepower to the front with dynamics benefits better corner-exiting acceleration and dexterous torque vectoring. deceleration, the front motor/generator electrons back to the lithium-ion with regenerative braking.

One that Porsche is seeing the as a war of efficiency: The tiny gas engine s flow is scavenged to drive a to recapture energy otherwise as heat. Porsche is counting joule, therm and BTU for this

Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter
Jaguar F-Type-fighter

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