Porsche, everyone agreed, trumped the rest of the car companies all over again. As they'd done in Geneva the previous March, they announced some earth-shattering news at an unbelievably early press conference on the first morning of the 2011 Detroit motor show – is 6.30am early enough for you? – so that for the rest of the day everyone else's news seemed just that little bit tame.
The news? The arrival on the stand of a magnificent coupe version of the previously seen 918 Spyder, under its own power, and the announcement that the transfer of long-time Porsche technical boss Wolfgang Durheimer would probably result in the development of some co-operative performance cars between Porsche and Bentley. Bentley back to Le Mans? No one ruled it in… or out.
Ford was the biggest mover among American companies. It showed the promised range of four 'electrified' Focus family vehicles, plus an elegant SUV called Vertrek, obviously designed to unify the European Kuga and US Escape models in their next generations (a couple of years away) and to correct the one criticism of the otherwise successful Kuga: that its rear passenger and boot package are on the tight side.
There were strong claims for the sales performance of the recently launched Fiesta (which JD Power says has raised the likelihood of repeat purchases by customers by nearly 30 points to Honda-Toyota levels), which makes the company very optimistic about the new Focus, which is nearing launch.
The thing that raises a question mark over the wisdom and success of this so-far-successful 'One Ford' philosophy (under which Ford will sell its mainstream cars in near-identical spec in all major markets) is that Volkswagen chose this show to launch a US Passat, having launched a quite different-looking (and shorter) European Passat a couple of months ago.