2011 Geneva Motor Show: The Supercars
Geographically located in between the supercar capitals of Europe, Switzerland is where the world's automakers come to showcase the latest array of mouth-watering, bank-balance-tempting exotic sports cars. And this year's Geneva Motor Show didn't disappoint in the least.
In between all those luxury sedans, upscale sport-utes and premium hatchbacks were a blinding assortment of six-figure supercars seemingly capable of bending the very laws of physics. Standing out from the crowd were brand-new offerings from Ferrari, Lamborghini and Pagani, new takes on old favorites from Maserati, Aston Martin and Jaguar, concept cars from Alfa Romeo, BMW and Wiesmann and more.
We went to Geneva to check them out with our own eyes (and lens) – follow the jump to see what we found, and click the images to view the full galleries from our sister-site Autoblog.
Among the most eagerly anticipated of the new debuts was the all-new Pagani Huayra. The oddly-named supercar from Modena replaces, at long last, the much-loved Zonda that stood for years as a favorite among those in the know. The new Huayra, packing a Mercedes AMG V12 engine, looks much better in red and in person than it did in the first batch of beige images released when the car was initially announced, leaving us with little doubt that the Huayra will be as sought-after as the Zonda it replaces.
Arguably even more anxiously awaited was the Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4. After months of teasers and spy shots, the Raging Bull marque finally unveiled its all-new supercar under the flood lights on the Geneva show floor to rave reviews. Replacing the old steel-framed Murcielago with a completely new carbon-fiber monocoque, the Aventador drives 700 metric horsepower to all four wheels from an all-new engine through a new type of gearbox with an F1-inspired suspension that, all together, promise blinding levels of performance.
Pagani and Lamborghini weren't the only Italian automakers presenting new supercars in Geneva, as Ferrari arrived with the new FF. Succeeding the lackluster 612 Scaglietti, the Ferrari Four is an all-wheel-drive "shooting brake" (that is, somewhere in between a hatchback and a station wagon with a sleeker profile) that seats four and packs a new V12 engine. The intriguing new flagship model was proudly showcased in duplicate at Ferrari's impressive show stand as well as at designer Pininfarina's (alongside the De Tomaso Deauville).
Ferrari's sister company Maserati, meanwhile, unveiled the ultimate variant of its GranTurismo range with the new GranCabrio Sport. The four-seat convertible packs the same 450-horsepower, 4.7-liter V8 engine as the GranTurismo MC Stradale, but offers wind-in-your-hair cruising for you and three of your best friends. (If they're not your best friends now, you can bet they will be after you give 'em a ride in this beauty.)
Another storied sister company Alfa Romeo wowed with the spritely 4C concept, seen for the first time here in Geneva. Envisioned as a more accessible successor to the achingly beautiful 8C Competizione, the 4C packs a much smaller four-cylinder engine (hence the name) and was unveiled in a tempting matte red paint scheme to critical acclaim. If built for public consumption, it could provide a decidedly more latin-flavored alternative to England's Lotus.
The fun wasn't all left up to the Italians, though, as the Germans got in on the supercar action as well. BMW presented its concept for a technologically-advanced roadster in the form of the Vision ConnectedDrive which is strictly a show car, but its ingredients could find their way into future production models from Munich.
Niche automaker Wiesmann, also powered by BMW engines, presented its Spyder concept that boils the existing Wiesmann Roadster into a more stripped-down, if not necessarily attractive, package.
Meanwhile Gumpert – producers of the lightning-quick but ugly-duckling Apollo supercar – presented the new Tornante with a sleeker form designed by Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera of Milan.
Heading further north, Swedish supercar-builder Koenigsegg presented the final production version of the new Agera as well as the even more extreme new Agera R. Capable of burning E85 bio-ethanol, the Agera R's twin-turbo V8 produces as much as 1,115 horsepower for a 2.9-second sprint to sixty.
The British were well represented as well by former sister companies Aston Martin and Jaguar. The former unveiled the new Virage, a luxurious V12 grand touring coupe based on (and slotting into the line-up in between) the DB9 and DBS models. Jaguar meanwhile presented the ultimate version of its XK coupe to take in the form of the XKR-S. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the original XKE, the limited-edition XKR-S offers up 550 horsepower from its supercharged V8 for a 4.2-second 0-60 time.
Finally the Japanese joined in on the action with the Nürburgring package for the Lexus LFA. For an extra $70k over the $375k list price on a "regular" LFA, the Nürburgring package offers extra power, aerodynamics and other enhancements that make the V10-engined supercar even more extreme. A pretty good note on which to finish our coverage of this year's Geneva Motor Show.