The 2013 Frankfurt motor show has yielded plenty of new performance cars and concepts worthy of discussion. Nearly 100,000 visitors are visited at the Messe Frankfurt trade fair, including drivers, developers and manufacturers.
It was a damn good show that brought us the sexy Volvo Concept Coupe, inspired by the old P1800; the polarizing, angular Lexus LF-NX; and the wild Audi Sport Quattro concept. It also saw the reveal of production versions of the Audi A3 cabrio, the fantastic Porsche 918 Spyder (and its mind-blowing Nürburgring time), and another hybrid supercar, the BMW i8.
Now after dashing through downpours and dodging crowds in the multiple halls at Messe Frankfurt, it’s time to round-off our coverage of this automotive hardware spectacular with a look at some of our other favorites from the around show floor.
Best in Show from Frankfurt………………
Most Significant: Jaguar C-X17
Jaguar unveiled its first-ever sports crossover concept, the C-X17. The biggest take away from the British automaker’s new concept is its all-aluminum structure: with the F-Type and redesigned Range Rover both touting the high-strength, low-weight alloy, Jaguar/Land Rover has solidified a commitment to aluminum as its material of the future. Little is known about the C-X17, but early word is that the concept’s base will first be used to platform a new premium sedan in 2015. Who knows, JLR may even built another artsy shrine to its favorite metal…
You had to do double and triple takes of the rounded, low-profile, hunkered-down cruise-missile Volvo Concept coupe to register it in your mind as a Volvo, especially from the rear. Once we noticed the Volvo signature grille and the visual of the P1800 on the wall above it, it all suddenly made sense. It certainly looks more P1800 than Bertone Coupe. And it sure looks better than the four-door
There has always been a cult following for the Golf R and R32 and rightly so. The new R promises to continue the legacy with 296 hp powering all four wheels in the seventh generation Golf chassis, a combination that has to be freakishly good.
Audi Sport quattro concept
It was a fairly easy choice to name the Audi Sport quattro concept Best in Show. Because it’s the concept with everything: 700-hp, high-tech plug-in hybrid drivertrain, superb heritage, really cool lines and the hope of production.
Infiniti Q30 Concept
In another move to corner the premium youth market, Infiniti finally took the wraps off its Q30 Concept. With this luxury five-door liftback, Nissan’s luxury subsidiary puts the Audi A3 and Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class square in its crosshairs, so we can believe Infiniti when it says that the Q30 represents a future production vehicle. The Q30 carries over plenty of design language from the new Q50; except future Infiniti models to stick to these cues. Most surprising, though, is that a ‘premium youth market’ even exists
Mercedes-Benz has finally put the CL-Class out to pasture, and its replacement comes in the S-Class Coupe. The concept is a dramatically sportier interpretation of the all-new 2013 S-Class Sedan, with a 2+2 configuration and AMG-esque styling cues abound. Under the long, sweeping hood is 4.6-liter V8 Biturbo mill, good for 449hp and 516lb-ft. of yank. The S-Class Coupe carries over plenty of the Sedan’s luxury kit, including dual 12.3-inch digital touchscreens, ‘Magic Body Control’ adaptive suspension, and a duo of front-facing cameras integrated into its elaborate electro-safety systems. Production is a certainty, but Benz isn’t saying when the S-Class Coupe will be delivered.
Ferrari 458 Speciale
Having already pranced out its LaFerrari hypercar for the Geneva show in March, Ferrari‘s Frankfurt presence is limited to the 458 Speciale. The new iteration walks in the footsteps of Maranello’s prior special-edition supercars, namely the 360 Challenge Stradale and 430 Scuderia. Of course the Speciale gets a 44-horsepower bump, settling at a stout 596hp. But its diet plan is the most impressive note – at 2,844lbs, the Speciale is 430lbs lighter than the regular Italia. A tweaked electronic differential, more aggressive rubber, and revised aerodynamics are all ordered from the high-performance, special-edition á la carte. It’s one of the best sounding Ferraris in recent memory, and loud enough to drown out hater’s griping over the unapologetic racing stripe.