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Geneva International Motor Show Review

Lamborghini Veneno

Fat Wallet Drools

Ferrari enthralled us with LaFerrari. Styled entirely in-house and powered by a 6.3-litre V12 hybrid system, a total of only 499 are going to be made, each costing a cool £1 million.

Rolls Royce stayed true to their roots with the Wraith coupé. Showing no signs of diversifying into different market segments like Bentley with their SUV, instead it's about a century and more of tradition and pedigree, maintaining that strong exclusivity positive.

And now the show's most exclusive offering, one of only three Venenos, a street-legal racing car by Lamborghini. For your €3 million you get new bodywork which increases downforce and a power increase that pushes the top speed to 221mph

Toyota iRoad

Funky Prototypes

The Volkswagen XL1 uses a lightweight, aerodynamic, carbon fibre construction and a diesel-electric hybrid drivetrain to deliver awesome efficiency. This translates to a potential real-world fuel consumption of 127mpg.

Land Rover unveiled the Defender Electric trial model. Its electric motor offers 250lb ft from idle and the battery pack gives a range of 50 miles plus a 12-mile reserve. Land Rover's Terrain Response system has also been incorporated.

The tiny Toyota i-Road is a three-wheeled beauty intended for urban commuters. It uses 'Active Lean' technology to balance when cornering and its battery can be fully replenished in three hours.

Staying with commuting, the Rinspeed microMAX hopes to revolutionise urban car sharing. Bus-style doors and standing seats afford users quick access and egress and the journeys themselves can be planned on the cloud.

Golf GTD

Production Gems

We are all wowed by the top-end fantastical efforts, but what keeps the show's feet on terra firma and the automotive industry's wheels rotating are the real world, planned production models.

No car in Geneva this year came close to the VW Golf GTI 7th generation which promises to be nothing short of brilliant. So brilliant in fact that it was awarded 'Car of the Year 2013'!

Also of note were Renault's cheeky, eye-catching Captur, the feisty Honda NSX and the new Nissan Leaf. Nissan has slashed the entry level price of this British built electric car to encourage uptake. They've also tweaked the styling, improved the luggage capacity, boosted cold weather performance with a new heat pump, retuned the handling and added an optional fast-charger that reduces recharge times from eight hours to four.

All told, the show was a roaring success. We hope you enjoyed our little snapshot - there was so much going on it would take far too long to go through everything. You can find out more at the Salon International de l'Auto website.

The Geneva International Motor Show officially closed its doors last Sunday night. Over 11 days almost 700,000 enthusiastic visitors enjoyed this fabulous window into automotive future. In addition to the wide and diverse range of every day cars to be seen, they were treated to a bounty of experimentation and individuality.

Industry Innovation

Volvo continue their long-term vision of road safety and accident avoidance with 'cyclist detection'. The system, comprising a camera in front of the interior rear view mirror, a radar in the front grille and a central control unit, can detect cyclists and apply braking if it detects an incident might be about to happen.

Peugeot announced their RCZ unique 'View Top technology' which aims to offer a convertible driving experience without the expense or loss of structural rigidity. View Top uses a sliding folding roof made of fabric with integrated curved glass panels, and opens from windscreen to boot in 12 seconds.

The Porsche 911 GT3 made its world debut. It punches at a similar weight to the Carrera S and promises an emotional and exhilarating drive despite being an automatic. All credit to the new dual-clutch gearbox delivering shorter intermediate ratios, quicker and more aggressive shifts and no forward creep.