#Daily Round-Up - Day 1
Hello and welcome back to Geneva, where day one of the show has just finished. The exhibition halls of the Palexpo have been packed today as the public got to glimpse the latest and greatest from the automotive world.
Let’s dive right into Day 1!
Today’s musical accompaniment is Professional Griefers by deadmau5
IMP, Monolith, LaVache, AMCC and Nuntius kickec the day off with a full reveal of the group’s upcoming cars. New versions of Monolith’s M-X and GST were shown, the former of which was a special edition in honour of the car’s crowning as SUV of the Year 2016. The newest version of the S1 was also shown, or rather the first of 2 versions of the new S1 was shown, in this case being a 415hp wagon.
Then came the reveal we’d all been waiting for; at a special keynote held in the main auditorium, the brand new GS260R was at last unveiled, having been teased like crazy over the past 2 weeks. The new coupe, based on the GS250, is a departure from the more saloon-styled versions of the 260R from the 90s, but it looks to be just as potent and powerful as before. An updated version of the 2.6l V6 from the original sits under the bonnet, while the body itself is made of carbon fibre, which should certainly make this thing nimble as hell. Oh, and it looks fantastic.
LaVache unveiled a new turbocharged version of the Thundercracker compact; it packs 350hp and sends that to all four wheels, yet retains the elegance of the standard car. How very civilised indeed! AMCC showed us the new Hercules pickup and the new TurboTech engines that will be powering the range, as well as a smooth looking pre-production concept of the Comet sedan. Their big reveal, however, came in the form of a new ‘analogue’ supercar called the Hurricane X, a 680hp AWD orange monster that looks gorgeous.
Nuntius also revealed a replacement for the old Exedra, powered by a 370hp V8 and coated in weirdly-orange-brown paint.
EADC’s newest version of the Corsair, the CRX, arrived today in time for a sort-of reveal where we learned that it has a 7.1l V12 under the bonnet, a very large engine indeed for a GT Car. We’ll have more on this soon when full specs are released, though we can tell you that EADC have hinted - by saying that they won’t, essentially - that they’re going to be coming back to GT racing, just not yet. Yeah, sure, ‘not yet’…
A weird thing came at lunctime today; Betta sort of released a car, called the Polaris line. We think, at lrast. The smart supermini certainly looks nice and is banking on its lack of chrome as a selling point. We really aren’t sure about that marketing slogan, however…
A little after 1 pm and I found myself in the auditorium once more for the AL Autos presentation. Neither me nor the hundreds of other journalists were ready for what followed - the company gave us an almost ridiculous number of new cars as one by one 12 different cars were unveiled. To say the least, you could the mad typing of everyone in that room above the crazy music despite how loud it was as journalists scrambled to note down everything.
I really didn’t know where to start with this, nor what to say, but I can tell you that the company are releasing 3 different Le Mans cars, none of which will apparently actually be competing in any endurance competitions. As well as this, a coupe of some sorts called the Luce and a mid-engined car called the Montare wa…right, I’m sorry, but there’s only so much one can take in during a keynote, and this was frankly ridiculous. How do you people even have the money to develop so many new cars at once anyway?!
Thankfully, DSD restored some of my sanity and quenched my excitement as, at long last, we get to drive the Saratoga. The companies most hyped vehicle ever, this aluminium sports coupe looks phenomenal from the outside. On the road, it’s even more impressive. We love the gearbox; it’s your usual SC sequential, but its spaced well and feels really usable.
The big wheels, which come in at 285/295mm F/R respectivley, do limit the nippiness and sharpness of the thing, but the excellent suspension makes up for that. It deals with bumps and road imperfections well, and handles smoothly with plenty of grip. Acceleration is quick enough to be fun yet very easy to handle, and it feels planted at speed. For a really fun experience though, go for the Turbo option; it’s a 213 mph screamer that lacks the finesse of the base model but packs loads of power, making it feel more like a miniature supercar.
Hodan unveiled the unusual looking Nobu concept, an aerodynamic concept with slightly divisive styling that is apparently an extended thought from the future. Nope, me neither.
On a separate note, a new company called Pegasus was launched today, an “American and European brand from Hodan”, with their debut car being the Ceres executive saloon. Designed to economic and civilised, the restained and simple styling of the Ceres will certainly appeal to some looking for a large sedan without the usual bling and luxury touches found on rivals, some of which have been revealed at this show. Don’t be fooled by its simplicity though, the Ceres RS trim should excite you a little more - it’s a 600 hp, AWD twin-turbo monster with sleeper styling. We likey.
Another new company, Marc-, sorry, Turin, also launched today, having apparently undergone some rapid rebranding. This “New Player on the Sportcar Market” revealed a smart looking sportscar platform called the Exalt today, featuring sharp if generic styling and a range of trims, all powered by the same 1.8l Turbo i4. These include the S, a 973kg, 200hp gnat of a car that’ll do 0-60 in 4.1 seconds - very fast indeed -, the GT, which is apparently more comfortable yet only weights 50 kg more, and most impressive of all, the R340 trim, which squeezes 340hp from that same 1.8l engine and will deliver you to 60 in 3.0s. That really is supercar killing performance right there!
Zenshi had a new version of the Altaris for uis today, a large MPV with good looks. Fairly powerful and coming in at just 1650 kg even with 8 seats, it should be quite nippy to drive. Meanwhile, EADC showed off a tuned version of their Verona compact called the JR2. This 385 hp - yes, 385hp in a compact - derives its power froma rally engine that sends it from 0-60 in 4.5 seconds and new aero. They claim its as fast around a track as their Corsair - we’d love to see that showdown!
At last, the anonymous advert proclaiming the last V8 to “be a good one” bore fruit: the 2019 TMT Resistance! This 468hp muscle car is much less orange than on the poster, but has a push-rod engine and will cost ~$50k. No details as of yet of much else as its still a concept, but this certainly looks to be a solid muscle car, though push rods are unusual. Perhaps its about maintaining some tradition.
Finally, just before doors closed, Galt announced the new Riviera R. Specs look slightly perplexing: a 138hp car that will do 0-60 in 9.3 seconds yet tops out at 166 mph. Magic? Witchcraft? Or just some special engineering? We’ll have more on this soon.
That wraps up today’s events. Gavin won’t be able to do any writing for a few days as he’s busy with real life stuff, and will be back on Sunday. He’ll do his best to cover everything that gets released over the next few days as best as possible, but might have to do it over a few posts etc. Either way, he’ll see you then!
(back in character)
In the mean time, the official opening night party has just begun at the Le Verre à Monique bar, and Gavin will be attending the annual Genevan Grand Get-Down tomorrow night - it’s one of the biggest show-related events on the automotive calendar and is sure to have a few too many industry representatives getting way too drunk. More on that after my inevitable hangover has cleared…
Bye for now!