Expert viewpoints on the show from Autocar's ground force at Palexpo
8 March 2012

Opinions are never in short supply at motor shows, and this year's event in Geneva was no different. We've picked out our favourite musings from the Autocar team at Palexpo, with topics from the horsepower glut to new tech and divisive visual design.


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Matt Burt: Here's Honda's real Geneva star

The Honda NSX's European debut was outshone by the marque's new 1.6-litre four-pot turbodiesel for Matt. The lightweight oil-burner emits just 95g/km of CO2.

Richard Bremner: Style to VW's substance is welcome

Richard was pleased to see VW's rakish Cross Coupe concept looking so good, and even more pleased to learn its shapely form may well reach the showroom.

Steve Cropley: Christian Horner is worth his weight to Red Bull

Red Bull Racing's tie-up with Infiniti roused initial cynicism in Steve, but a meeting with team boss Christian Horner on Inifiniti's Geneva stand changed his views.

Jim Holder: All change for Merc (and its buyers)

The new A-Class shows Mercedes has its sights set on a younger clientele, but Jim queries where that leaves existing owners, and how the plan will work long-term.

Jim Holder: The horsepower race is back

We thought the clamouring for bhp abated some years ago, but Jim heard it all over Palexpo, and it was arguably loudest around the 730bhp Ferrari F12 Berlinetta.

Hilton Holloway: Geneva goes electric

GM's range-extender Ampera/Volt pair stole this year's European Car of the Year title, following the all-electric Leaf's win last year. Hilton applauds their victory while musing their place.

Vicky Parrott: My Geneva show star car, the Ford Fiesta ST

Vicky saw past the stramash caused by the F12 to choose a real-world thriller-in-waiting as her pick of the crop. 178bhp should make the Fiesta ST a genuine Renaultsport Clio rival.

Matt Prior: What Mitsubishi's hybrid system can do for the Lancer

Mitsubishi's new hybrid setup uses an electric motor at each axle, supplemented by a petrol engine/generator. While Mitsu touted the system's CO2 aspirations, Matt's mind was on its dynamic potential.

Julian Rendell: Bentley's colossal SUV could do with some tweaks

The EXF 9 F is Bentley's conceptual nod towards the firm's first production SUV, but it's two-metre width and conservative straight waistline raised doubts for Julian.

Mark Tisshaw: Marchionne talks sense, but is anyone listening?

A frank address by Fiat Group boss Sergio Marchionne condoned the need for manufacturing homogenisation in today's market, but Mark wonders if he's wasting his breath.

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