2005 Frankfurt Auto Show, Part II Page 2

September 12, 2005

The crosstown is also the first smart model to be installed with hybrid drive, a development of the unit first announced in 2001. The hybrid system uses the same 61-hp gasoline engine from the fourtwo, combined with a 23-kW electric motor, to give an estimated 15-percent improvement in fuel economy in the EU cycle. Smart estimates that the crosstown will accelerate to 62 mph “ten percent better” than the fortwo’s 15.5-second time. Top speed is limited to 84 mph.

 

 

Škoda Yeti

 

2005 Skoda Yeti concept

2005 Skoda Yeti concept

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Škoda presented a new open-pickup version of its design-study car of the same name, originally shown at the Genevashow earlier this year, and as the automaker says, it’s “ready to go on safari in the jungle of the city.” The trick feature of the Yeti is a variable roof system designed and manufactured in cooperation with Karmann. There’s also a canvas roof, so the Yeti can be configured for various combinations of hardtop and soft-top motoring as desired. Even better, the hardtop folds in half for easy stowage and stores on the luggage compartment floor in a special designated area, as helpers demonstrated on the stage, completely unattaching the hardtop and then reattaching it during the presentation. The rear seats can be folded completely flat to obtain a mini-pickup tailgate area with grippy lengthwise rubber ribs. Inside, the Yeti uses rugged, new-generation fabrics meant to echo those used in outdoor sportswear. Another design feature unique to the Yeti is its sound system, which has removable speakers and controls on top of its center stack.

 

 

Škoda Octavia RS

 

On the Frankfurt stand, Škoda marked its 100th anniversary of automaking and chose to make it the world premiere of its sporty Octavia RS model and Combi RS wagon version to its lineup, said to help bring back the company’s “sports car tradition” first started in the 1930s and also build on the Škoda RS’s rally successes in the 1970s and into the ’80s. The model’s new 2.0-liter FSI turbocharged in-line four — fresh from Volkswagen’s lineup — makes 200 hp and can run all the way up to 148 mph. The rich list of equipment upgrades includes a sport exhaust system, six-speed manual transmission, lowered sport suspension, “Cat’s Eye” reflectors, an integrated spoiler, green brake calipers, and available Zenith 18-inch alloys plus new yellow and “Race Blue” metallic colors. The interior is highlighted with aluminum-look trim, sport seats, and a fresh three-spoke steering wheel.

Mercedes-Benz S-Class

 

2007 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

2007 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

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To a packed house at the Frankfurt show’s DaimlerChrysler pavilion, CEO Dieter Zetsche unveiled the next generation of Mercedes-Benz’s flagship S-Class, seven years after the introduction of the highly successful current-generation car. Design-wise, the S-Class borrows styling cues from both the Maybach and Mercedes past while setting a fresh new look. Inside and out it’s completely new; the body shell is made of high-strength steel alloys, while the hood, fenders, and trunklid are made of aluminum.

 

Inside, there’s an improved COMAND controller, and new seats with massage and ventilation features. Offered for the first time is an infrared-based Night View Assist system.

 

No matter which powerplant customers choose, power is way up in the new S. The new S500 has a 5.5-liter V-8 offering 388 hp and capable of dashing to 62 mph in 5.4 seconds, while the S350 has a 272-hp V-6 that can reach 62 mph in a still respectable 7.3 seconds. Top of the range will be a S600, with output from the V-12 up to 517 hp. This version is capable of 0-62 mph in a very impressive 4.6 seconds. A seven-speed automatic transmission is standard on all V-6 and V-8 models, and manual shift action is possible through the new steering shift control on the steering column stalk.

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