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2004 Paris Auto Show Preview


2005 Porsche Boxster

2005 Porsche Boxster

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2004 Paris Auto Show by TCC Team (9/20/2004)
The well-loved lights of the City of Light take the stage.

 

When the Mondial de l’Automobile in Paris opens its doors to the public on September 25, the public will know what new cars to expect. As has become best-practices for the major auto shows, most of the major debuts have already been announced by the companies set to push them on stage over the two press days, Sept. 23 and 24. As usual there will be some surprise debuts on the press days — but we know for sure the following vehicles will make the trip to the City of Lights . Now if you’ll pardon us while you read, we’ll be brushing up on our French:

 

Porsche Boxster

The new Porsche Boxster will bow in Paris with its proven 2.7-liter flat-six engine, now with 12 hp more than before for a total of 240 hp. The 3.2-liter six-cylinder in the Boxster S version develops 20 hp more and has now 280 hp. Porsche says the mid-engine Boxster sprints from 0-60 mph in 6.2 seconds, while its top speed is 158 mph. The Boxster S needs 5.5 seconds to sprint to 60 mph and has a top speed of 167 mph. The five-speed gearbox has been revised and the S will get a new six-speed manual transmission.

The second-generation Boxster’s chassis has been retuned on a wider track, larger wheels add to the stance of the new body, and the nose now clearly shows a family relation with the 911. There is also new lighting with separate main headlamps and front lamps with integrated fog lamps. There are also larger rear air vents, bolder door sills and a larger glass area. The new Boxster is the first roadster that offers head airbags in combination with thorax airbags.

 

Mercedes A-Class

2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class

2005 Mercedes-Benz A-Class

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Mercedes-Benz has already given us the details of the second-generation A-Class. In Europe, the small Benz (at just 151 inches long) will be available with a choice of three gas engines, ranging from 95 to 136 hp and three diesels with power output ranging from 82 to 140 hp. The 193-hp A200 Turbo will be available later in 2005. Mercedes will not (yet) bring the A-Class to the North American market. America will probably have to wait for the longer B-Class crossover that is expected next year.

 

 

2005 Ferrari F430

2005 Ferrari F430

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Ferrari F430

The successor of the 360 Modena will be one of the eye-catchers of the Paris show. The Ferrari F430 has a V-8 with 490 hp and 343 lb-ft of torque, with which it will be able to sprint from zero to 60 mph in 4.0 seconds. New are the electronic differential and a system to adjust suspension settings from the steering wheel. It originates from Formula 1, where it is called marinetto. The transmission also originates from F1 racing and can shift gears in 150 milliseconds.

 

Volkswagen GTI

2006 Volkswagen GTI

2006 Volkswagen GTI

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Last year, Volkswagen showed the Golf GTI as a prototype, but later this month we will see the production version in Paris. It will be the fifth generation of the godfather of all sports compacts. Thanks to VW chief Bernd Pischetsrieder the new GTI will be a true sporty version. Earlier this year, Mr. Pischetsrieder said in an interview with an English car magazine that the GTI was nearly killed because of marketing strategies. The latest version is lowered by 0.6 inch and the suspension is sport-tuned. Under the hood is a brand-new 2.0-liter FSI turbo engine with 200 hp and 206 lb-ft of torque. The four-cylinder is teamed to a six-speed gearbox. With this driveline the new GTI reaches a top speed of 146 mph and should be able to sprint from 0-60 mph in 7 seconds. With the new DSG transmission this should even be 6.7 seconds.

Compared to the prototype, the exterior of the production version of the GTI has not been changed. With big bumpers front and aft, a black radiator grille with red rim, and black trim at the lower part of the body the GTI is easily recognizable, as are the rear wing, double exhaust tips, and 17-inch wheels.

The interior of the GTI is finished with sporty accents, such as sport seats with the GTI logo in the headrests, a three-spoke steering wheel, and aluminum pedals and shift knob. Also, the instrument panel has been redesigned. The fast Golf will have standard climate control, a tire-pressure monitoring system, fog lights, and a rain sensor.


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