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2006 Paris Auto Show Preview Page 3

2007 MINI Cooper

2007 MINI Cooper

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2007 MINI Cooper

Last month, TheCarConnection brought you the first drive of the new MINI Cooper. But at the time, MINI engineers were reluctant to show the final details of the new hatchback's face. Now, MINI has sent out the first official pictures of the new Cooper, which will make its world debut at the Paris auto show in September. The new MINI is wider and gets a new four-cylinder engine, as well as a revamped interior.

Preview: 2007 MINI Cooper by Henny Hemmes (7/31/2006)
Evolved in a gradual way.


Renault Nepta


2006 Renault Nepta concept

2006 Renault Nepta concept

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Renault’s convertibles are popular in Europe, but this concept could take things to a whole new level. The Nepta is the sort of luxury four-seat cabrio that the firm has never had, and it will make its debut at the Paris Motor Show.

Powered by a 420-hp twin-turbo V-6, the car will hit 60 mph in under five seconds, and comes with a seven-speed automatic gearbox. The rear overhang is the longer of the two, harking back to what Renault calls ‘the golden age of automotive styling’. There’s LED front lamps that including a daytime running feature. Access to the cabin is through gull-wing doors, revealing bench seats front and rear. DVD screens with folding protective covers are fitted into the headrests. -Richard Yarrow

Kia Picks Cee'd

2006 Kia cee'd

2006 Kia cee'd

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A new Kia crossover vehicle will adopt the unlikely name of cee'd when it goes into production later this year. The big wagon, which made its debut as a concept at the Geneva motor show and will be shown in production form at the Paris show, will take on the name of the concept (pronounced seed), Kia says, in homage to its roots: CE for "European Community" and ED for "European design." The new mid-size hatchback will be built in Kia's plant inSlovakia and is set to go on sale in December of this year across Europe.

Citroen C4 Picasso

2007 Citroen C4 Picaso

2007 Citroen C4 Picaso

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French firm Citroen has revealed first pictures of the all-new C4 Picasso, a seven-seat compact minivan, ahead of its debut at next month's Paris Motor Show.

Initially it was believed the car would replace the aging but popular Xsara Picasso. But as that's a five-chair model and 12 inches shorter, the company has revealed both will sell side by side for the forseeable future.

The newcomer is based on the C4 hatchback and will battle for sales with the Vauxhall/Opel Zafira and Renault Grand Scenic. Kit will include zonal air conditioning, air suspension at the rear, and soundproofed windows.

The most striking element of the new design is the windshield. The glass goes partially over the front seat occupants, creating a vertical visibility angle of 70 percent. Standard on this car, it's only an option on rivals that offer it.

Inside the designers have created an eye-catching minimalist dashboard and are promising a huge leap forward in cabin material quality. The rear window glass opens independently of the whole tailgate, while a clever feature allows the rear of the car to lower slightly - to aid awkward loading - at the push of a button. Additional technologies include hill-start assist and an innovative parking space measurement system that helps drivers find a suitable bay to leave the car.

Under the bonnet will be 2.0-liter 143-hp gas engine, or 1.6-liter 110-hp and 2.0-liter 138-hp diesels. The car will go on sale in France before the end of the year, and other European countries soon after. -Richard Yarrow


BMW X3, 3-Series Coupe

Honda CR-V and Civic Type R

Hyundai Tiburon

Kia concept

Land Rover Defender and Range Rover Sport TDV8

Peugeot 908RC and possible 908 Le Mans car

Porsche 911 Targa

Subaru Tribeca, facelifted Legacy

Suzuki Swift Sport, Splash

Volvo C30 Sport

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