The first night of the Paris Motor Show was dominated by the premieres of various VW Group models like the Audi A3 Sportback as well as the show-stopping Jaguar F-type. As well as the hotly-anticipated McLaren P1 and Range Rover 4, today has also seen a raft of important models make their debuts.
Toyota has unveiled two variants of its new Auris. Both the hatchback and Touring Sports estate are on show at Paris, the latter a fresh introduction to the range. Hopefully the edgier styling and revised suspension will give the Auris an advantage in a fiercely competitive class.
Dacia is showcasing three new cars at Paris, two of which will be sold in Britain. The refreshed Sandero and Sandero Stepway will join the Duster in the Romanian firm's line-up when sales start in January. The Logan notchback is also being exhibited but won’t reach us.
Over at Mercedes, special attention will undoubtedly be paid to the SLS Electric Drive, the world’s most powerful electric car. It offers a range of 155 miles but will cost €416,500. An all-electric B-Class provides a riposte to the BMW Concept Active Tourer. The SLS AMG GT, now the new F1 safety car, is also on show. Over the standard SLS, the GT comes with an extra 20bhp (bringing the total to 583) and revised gearbox software to slash shift times.
Smart has shown the new Forstars concept at Paris, the latest in its line of electric cars. It could pave the way for what Smart calls an ‘SUC’ (Sport Utility Coupe) addition to its range.
At Fiat, the latest Panda 4x4 variant made its global debut, along with Trekking and Natural Power derivatives. The latter is a TwinAir Panda that runs on a dual fuel combination of petrol and methane whilst the Trekking is a pseudo-4x4.
At the other end of the Italian price spectrum, Maserati has unveiled the GranCabrio MC, its most expensive convertible yet. It takes styling cues from the MC Stradale hard-top and is expected to cost around £115,000.
Reanult has begun its supermini onsluaght at Paris with three versions of the Clio 4 being displayed. Along with the regular five-door hatch, the wraps came off the 197bhp Renaultsport Clio and the Clio estate, the latter of which won't be available in Britain.
Paris has also seen the global debut of Vauxhall's new city car, the Adam. It takes aim sqaurely at the Mini and Fiat 500 with a myriad of customisation options and cheeky styling.
Much attention has recently been paid to Honda’s future, with another Civic Type-R being guaranteed. For now, enthusiasts will have to content themselves with the CRZ facelift; not only does it feature more power, Honda has also subtly tweaked the hybrid coupe inside and out.
Nissan has chosen Paris to unveil its Terra, the car it believes can make hydrogen fuel cells a viable energy source for future cars. An SUV sized between a Juke and Qashqai, Nissan is confident the technology could be mass-produced whenever a hydrogen infrastructure became available. Following its American debut earlier in 2012, the lightly facelifted 370Z also stars.