2004 Geneva Motor Show Index by TCC
Citroen Makes It a Family
Citroën has done it before: unveiling a
rally car based on a new model range. With a sport concept, the French automaker
does not only show the design of the C4, the successor of the compact Xsara, but
also its rally plans with the new car. The front end of the C4 Citroën Sport
shows the family likeness with the twin chrome chevrons. The interior is
designed to meet the regulations of the WRC, the World Rally Championship.
The renewal of the Citroën brand started with the mid-size C5, followed by
the small C3 and C2 mini. The debut of the production version of the C4 is
expected in September at the Paris auto show, while the market introduction will
follow in the fall. The model shares the platform and the engines with its PSA
cousin, the Peugeot 307.
Peugeot Breeds a New 407
Peugeot shows the new generation of the mid-size 407 for
the first time, so it is no wonder both the saloon and the station wagon version
(dubbed SW) take an important part of the stand. As was the case with its
predecessor, the new 407 will also get a coupe, which is expected to bow in
Paris as well.
And just like Citroën, Peugeot has unveiled a sport concept
to show what the design of the new model. In this case it is the Silhouette,
slightly wider than the concept car. It has a broad stance with wide finders,
air vents on the front wings and down the side skirts, deep spoilers and a rear
wing. The interior is as sporty, with two bucket seats and a lot of carbon fiber,
black and red leather, a digital display in the dashboard and a screen
incorporated in the steering wheel.
Kia’s Picanto and Cerato
Kia will be conquering the European market with its new Picanto, of which it
hopes to sell 73,000 this year. The small Picanto (with a length of 137.7 inch),
five doors and room for four is priced competitively with the same base price
(approx. $6800) as the Fiat Panda, the class’s newest and already successful
competitor. The new Kia has been especially developed for the European market.
On the occasion if the world premiere of the compact five-door Cerato, Kia
announced plans to build a major new manufacturing facility for the production
of high-volume models. The plant will be located in Slovakia in eastern Europe
and will build up to 200,000 cars annually. The facility will be owned and
operated by Kia and represents an investment of $850 million. Kia plans to sell
500,000 vehicles in Europe by 2008, generating a three-percent market share.
Hyundai’s E3 Concept Begins with Europe
Hyundai, the other South Korean car manufacturer is equally
as ambitious. Of the Tucson SUV that had its European premier in Geneva, Hyundai
hopes to sell 50,000 per year in Europe. Last year the company exported 61
percent of its production of 1.01 million cars, which is according Hyundai’s
goal to be with the five largest car manufacturers in the world in 2010. In
Geneva, the Koreans unveiled the E3 concept car, what originated in the European
design center in Rüsselsheim. The E3 design shows the new styling direction
Hyundai has taken.