The 67th Frankfurt Motor Show has managed to demonstrate successfully the trends of the industry with a series of mostly down-to-earth concepts and freshly baked production cars with all the latest bells and whistles.
Our team has covered extensively all the premieres of the IAA 2017, bringing all the latest metal to your screens in real time.
With the dust now starting to settle, let’s take a look at what happened during the press days of the Frankfurt Motor.
Of course the name of the game is electric mobility, with the vast majority of the companies introducing their concepts, production cars or their plans for an electric future that is no longer considered a utopia. The race for a fully autonomous car is also one of the major talking points, with companies having decided that autonomous EVs are the next chapter in personal mobility.
However, some car makers showed they still how to please the petrolhead crowd; cars like the Porsche 911 GT3 Touring Package prove that driving still matters. Even Audi acknowledged that with the R8 V10 RWS, a rear-driven version of its halo sports car while Ferrari has revealed its all-new, entry-level model called Portofino, complete with 600hp.
Then we got a new BMW M5, which will now be a proper all-season weapon thanks to its selectable and very clever all-wheel drive system, the updated version of the Ford Mustang which despite some big revisions keeps the classic recipe intact and finally an all-new Audi RS4, probably the coolest super fast wagon of them all.
Sure, the aforementioned models represent the upper portion of the market but performance cars also come in more budget-friendly packages: they call them the hot-hatches. Just count how many new ones came to light: Hyundai i30N, Renault Megane RS, Seat Leon Cupra R, VW Polo GTI and the cheapest of them all, the sub-1000kg Suzuki Swift Sport.
Ever since Ferrari brought out the F50, which had a 4.7-liter V12 engine developed out of the 3.5-liter V12 of the 1990 F1 car, the world was wondering when and if we’ll ever see a company brave enough to give us an F1-engined road car.
As it turns out, Mercedes is that company. The AMG Project One is a plug-in hybrid monster, powered by a revised version of the turbocharged 1.6-liter V6 engine and four electric motors. The headlines figures are 1000hp and a 0-124mph (200km/h) in under six seconds but we get the feeling that we’re in for serious record-breaking performance once it hits the roads.
Then we get to the sea of crossovers, with almost every car maker bringing their SUVs under the spotlight. Production models include the BMW X3, the Citroen C3 Aircross, the Dacia Duster, the Hyundai Kona, the Jaguar E-Pace, the Opel Grandland X, the Porsche Cayenne, the Seat Arona and its cousin the VW T-Roc making their debuts.
The vast majority of the companies present at the Frankfurt Motor Show didn’t go crazy with their concepts this year as they’ve preferred to actually preview their future products rather than simply perform a publicity stunt. Near-production examples include BMW’s Z4 and Range Rover-rivaling X7 concepts, with the Bavarians also teasing the third member of their i model family with the i Vision Dynamics study.
Kia also allowed us to take a sneak peek at the design of the next Cee’d with the Proceed Concept, Mini showed us that the upcoming electric Mini will look like a Mini and nothing else, Skoda, VW and Mercedes also previewed their electric futures with the Vision E, I.D. Crozz II and Concept EQA but the biggest surprise came from Honda this year.
You see, in a world of over-designed, overly futuristic concepts and design studies, the Japanese company decided to go the other way, adopting simple, clean lines with a retro inspiration for their inaugural electric model. The Urban EV Concept just ticks all the right boxes and makes us more eager to find out how the production version will look like in 2019.