2004 Paris Auto Show Preview II

September 12, 2004


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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 opens its doors for the public on September 25th, there will be a slew of cars that have been unveiled at the preceding press days. In this second preview we bring more news on what we can expect in the French capital:


Mercedes Sports Tourers

Mercedes-Benz Paris Concepts

Mercedes-Benz Paris Concepts

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Mercedes-Benz is indefatigable when it concerns R-Class concepts. Together with the Vision R (the European version of the Grand Sports Tourer), Mercedes will show a new study, the CST Compact Sports Tourer, or Vision B.

The Vision R is simply is the upcoming R-Class that will bow next year, whereas the Vision B will arrive on the market as the B-Class. The Vision R, based on the next M-Class will get a new V-6 turbodiesel engine with 218 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque. The V-6 will be teamed to the 7G-Tronic seven-speed automatic transmission and will drive all four wheels. The Vision R has 4+2 seats and will be on the market as R-Class by the end of 2005.

The other Sports Tourer, the Vision B is the concept for the B-Class that is based on the new A-Class and that will hit the market in the spring of 2005. The wheelbase of the A-Class platform has been stretched about 8 inches and the body is 17 inches longer than that of the A-Class. The B will seat five and will offer considerable luggage room. Mercedes will offer the B-Class with a 140-hp four-cylinder engine with a maximum torque of 221 lb-ft,  a 1.7-liter with 116  hp and a 2.0-liter with 136 hp. Also a 109-hp 1.8 diesel engine will be available.


Renault Fluence

2004 Renault Fluence concept

2004 Renault Fluence concept

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Renault unveiled a concept of a 4+4 coupe in June in England and will take it to Paris as well. The French have serious plans to get back in the segment that it left when it stopped producing the Fuego. The Fluence indicated the future styling of such a coupe, while the cockpit is equipped with a joystick for the main functions, which will be visible on a screen on top of the dashboard. We think that it is not impossible that Renault will build a Laguna coupe based on the Fluence concept.


Alfa Romeo 147

Alfa Romeo will present its updated version of the 147. The compact model has a new nose with a larger and lower placed grille to enhance a more aggressive look. New headlights and new taillights have been fitted as well. The interior has been upgraded with new materials and a new instrument cluster. The Alfa 147 will get the faster 150-hp MultiJet diesel engine that will replace the same 1.9-liter variant with 140 hp. Also the Selespeed sequential transmission has been revised and the new 147 will get Comfort suspension as well. It will be standard on the 1.9 M-Jet with 150 hp and will be offered as an option for the other versions.


BMW 320 CD Convertible

2004 BMW 320CD Convertible

2004 BMW 320CD Convertible

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BMW will show its fast M5 and a 2.0-liter common-rail diesel engine in the X3 in Paris — and it will also display its first topless car with a diesel engine, the 320 CD Convertible. The four-cylinder, 2.0-liter direct-injection diesel engine has proven itself in the 3-Series and is especially popular in France, where 80 per cent of all 3-Series are sold with this diesel powerplant. It has 150 hp and 243 lb-ft of torque. In the Convertible this engine is teamed to a six-speed manual gearbox with short, sporty gearing. BMW will bring the 320 CD Convertible to other European markets in the spring of 2005.
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