Sunday 20 May 2018

Race is on for Frankfurt limelight

THE race is well and truly on to grab the headlines and the spotlight in the lead up to the Frankfurt Motor Show next month.

And again this week, we have had a few more glimpses of what to expect.

First, there is the updated version of Alfa's 4C Concept. The company has now confirmed its weight at around 850kg, while the engine delivers more than 200bhp.

It's a near-four-metre, two-seater, rear-wheel drive coupe, which uses technology and materials from the 8C Competizione (carbon, aluminium, rear-wheel drive etc).

Peugeot has two major items on show. Its new hybrid 508 RXH flagship is a taller 508-SW-based 'crossover'.

It has a two-litre diesel driving the front wheels, while an electric motor turns the rear ones -- giving a CO2 of 109g/km and a claimed combined 67.2mpg.

Then there is the HX1 concept, which also uses Hybrid4 technology, modular architecture and the first diesel hybrid in the world.

The HX1 has a 204bhp, 2.2-litre HDi diesel, with a six-speed gearbox.

Between the 95bhp electric motor and the engine, the combined output can pump out 299bhp.

Now that is serious power.

The XH1 can travel up to 30km on electric drive only because it has a 'plug-in' facility. The lithium-ion batteries can be recharged with a standard 240V mains electric socket. Peugeot claims a combined fuel consumption of 88.2mpg and 83g/km.

Audi has also been busy with this new urban concept taking shape.

These computer-enhanced pictures show the compact two-seat city cars (which have been 'built' in coupe and spyder guises).

Fiat is also to showcase its next-generation Panda. It is 3.65m long, around 12cm longer and six centimetres wider than the existing model.

Fiat claims it can cope with as many as five passengers. The rear seat folds and slides and the front passenger seat backrest can fold forwards to become a table.

The big news is that there will be a pair of two-cylinder petrols (64bhp and a turbocharged 84bhp) as well as a 1.3-litre, 4cyl 74bhp diesel.

The Panda has been a great little car and this promises to intensify the competition in the segment.

Irish Independent

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