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2006 Geneva Motor Show Preview, Part I


 

2006 Geneva Motor Show

2006 Geneva Motor Show

2006 Geneva Motor Show Coverage by TCC Team (2/19/2006) 

 

 

2006 Aston Martin Rapide concept

2006 Aston Martin Rapide concept

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With a little more than a week to the press preview days, the whispers ofGeneva introductions are being confirmed — or in a couple of cases, denied. A rumor was going round that Aston Martin were going to show a new convertible version of the V8 Vantage, but the Gaydon factory knows nothing about it, according to a trusted source at the company. The centerpiece of the stand in Switzerland will be the Rapide four-door coupe first shown in Detroit. No doubt there will also be talk about the car the company is building for the next James Bond film, but don’t expect any more than stylists’ sketches — this is a PR project that will be milked for some time yet, and there will be no premature exposure of anything.

 

 

 

 

 

It was expected that Bentley would also be showing a new open car, the Continental GTC it trailed with sketches as far back as last September. But that too will be absent from Genevaand won’t make its appearance until some time closer to mid-year. Bentley is probably too busy fulfilling demand for its existing products to push the GTC, and it will be tempting rich Swiss customers with special editions that celebrate sixty years of Bentley production at Crewe, the factory that became its home while under Rolls-Royce ownership after the second world war. The ‘Diamond Series’ 60-year cars will be a version of the Arnage that concentrates on craftsmanship, including special wood treatment to the interior, and a Continental GT that puts technology to the forefront. The coupe will feature Bentley’s first application of carbon ceramic brakes, with rotors 16.75 inches in diameter inside 20-inch wheels.

 

 

 

 

 

2006 Ford S-Max

2006 Ford S-Max

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Getting to the cars that will be in Geneva, Ford has confirmed that the production version of the SAV concept, which was so well received at last year’s show, will be unveiled in production form as the S-Max at this year’s show. The car is larger than the usual European MPV and is positioned in the range between the Mondeo wagon and the full-size Galaxy MPV. It will be available as a five or seven-seater, with either two or three rows of fold-flat seats in the passenger/load area. Styling is described as the first production example of the new Ford line shown by the iosis concept at Frankfurt last year.

 

 

 

 

 

2006 Lotus Europa

2006 Lotus Europa

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Lotus continues to produce sports cars in the pattern established back in the 1960s by founder Colin Chapman. Times change, however, and sparsely trimmed cockpits are no longer accepted, even for out-and-out sports cars. Hence the appearance in the company’s range of the Europa S, which is described as “Business Class by Lotus.” The car follows the lead of the Elise and Exige by achieving performance thanks to light weight, and in fact weighs in at just 2194 lb. But in order to provide a more comfortable, if not quite sumptuous, driving environment, the Europa S has lower chassis sides and a higher roofline, which improve entry and exit — always a problem with the Elise. The easy-access interior flouts Lotus tradition by offering leather trim, carpets and driver and passenger airbags. Powered by a 2-liter turbocharged engine producing 200 hp, the Europa S takes 5.5 seconds for the 0-60 sprint and tops out at 140 mph. The new car isn’t just a modified Elise, however. There are sufficient changes for it to have a new Lotus Type Number — 121. It’s interesting to note that Geneva will see various modern versions of Lotus Type No 7, which is still being made in a number of countries.


 
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