With less than three weeks until doors open at Frankfurt, take a look at what's set to break cover
Felix Page Autocar writer
22 August 2019

The Frankfurt motor show is traditionally one of the biggest events on the motoring calendar, and this year is no exception, with game-changing unveilings expected from Porsche, Volkswagen, Land Rover and more. 

Especially notable this year is a heightened emphasis on new electric cars. As well as the Volkswagen ID 3, we'll also get a look at the Honda E, Porsche Taycan, Peugeot e-2008 and others as manufacturers hit the ground running with plans for universal electrification. That being said, there will no doubt be quite a crowd gathered around conventionally fuelled new cars like the Land Rover Defender, Audi RS7 and BMW X6.

We've been getting ready for the show, and have compiled a list of all the important models we're expecting to see when the doors open on 12 September. We'll be updating it as we learn more, so keep an eye on our complete rundown to ensure you don't miss a thing:

Audi

RS Q3

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The wraps came off Audi's new Q3 Sportback last month, and now Audi Sport's RS-badged reworking is set to break cover at Frankfurt. The Mercedes-AMG GLB 45 rival has been driving around with minimal camouflage ahead of its arrival, and is expected to pack a 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine pumping out around 400bhp. 

Audi RS Q3 Sportback drops disguise before Frankfurt reveal

RS6

Audi Sport’s flagship wagon retains its twin-turbo 4.0-litre petrol V8 as it moves into a fourth generation for 2020, with power upgraded to 591bhp to take on the Mercedes-AMG E63 S and BMW M5. Visual differences over the standard A6 include trademark chunkier wheel arches, larger air intakes and bigger wheels.

2020 Audi RS6 Avant kickstarts new performance product offensive

RS7 Sportback

The new RS7 Sportback will be the hero car for Audi Sport’s range of performance models, sharing a 600bhp-plus V8 with the RS6. As with the outgoing variant, power will be sent to all four wheels by way of an eight-speed automatic gearbox, while an 80kg weight loss should bring subtle performance gains. 

New 2019 Audi RS7 Sportback to break 600bhp barrier

A3

Audi will introduce the fourth generation of its popular A3 in 2020 and is expected to show off the Volkswagen Golf rival at Frankfurt. Its launch has been pushed back due to Audi’s struggles with WLTP emissions testing and a heightened focus on EV development, but the company promises the new A3 will be the most advanced car in its segment and set new standards of refinement.

New 2020 Audi A3 to spawn seven-strong model lineup

S8, SQ8 and Q7 facelift 

We’ll also get our first in-the-metal look at the S8 performance saloon, one of only two models in Audi’s S range to retain a petrol powerplant, as well as the new SQ8 hot SUV and facelifted Q7 seven-seater. 

Audi reveals hot SQ8 as new flagship SUV

BMW

X6

The recently revealed third-generation X6 will make its public debut in Frankfurt before it enters UK showrooms, priced from around £63,000. The coupé-style high-rider’s looks have been brought into line with the brand’s current design language, and a refreshed range of powertrain options is headed up by a 523bhp 4.4-litre petrol V8 yielding a claimed 0-62mph time of 4.3sec and a limited 155mph top speed.

New BMW X6 arrives with revamped styling and engines

Vision M Next

The Vision M concept is BMW’s idea of what a comeback for the M1 supercar of 1978 might look like. Previewing a production sports car tipped to arrive before 2025, the Vision M packs a 591bhp petrol-electric plug-in hybrid drivetrain that's also destined to appear in more mainstream BMW M performance models further down the line. 

BMW M1 reborn as 591bhp two-seat plug-in hybrid

Cupra 

Electric concept 

Seat’s newly hived-off performance brand Cupra will show off a concept version of its first EV, which will take the form of a coupé-style SUV based on the Volkswagen Group’s universal MEB architecture. Previews show a rakish roofline, angular front end and distinctive headlight design, implying it will be a performance-oriented reworking of the Seat el-Born electric hatchback. 

Cupra previews first EV ahead of Frankfurt reveal

Honda 

E

The Honda E electric city car was first revealed in 95%-production-ready prototype guise at the Geneva motor show in March, but it's finally ready to emerge in its final form before customer deliveries begin next year. Expect little to change in the way of styling, with more than 6000 UK buyers alone having already expressed interest in buying an E. 

First drive: Honda E 2019 prototype

Hyundai 

Electric racer

Frankfurt will see the unveiling of Hyundai's first all-electric race car, which has been developed in Germany and previewed in a series of videos posted to the firm's Twitter feed. 

Details remain scarce, but the new model is likely to be based on the existing i30 N TCR customer racer. Last year, rival firm Cupra revealed early details of the 670bhp Seat Leon-based e-Racer, to enter an upcoming electric touring car race series, which Hyundai is also expected to support. 

Electric concept car

Hyundai will also show off its new '45' electric concept which is claimed to "reveal the next stage of its future mobility vision". Details remain scarce, but the firm says the model will preview the design of future electric Hyundais and be equipped with a customisable interior.

i10

A new design sketch of Hyundai’s third-gen i10 supermini show it will maintain its compact footprint but feature notably evolved exterior styling. We expect the new i10 to share a platform with the latest Kia Picanto and offer a range of small-capacity petrol engines. 

New Hyundai i10 previewed ahead of Frankfurt show debut 

i30 N Project C

One new Hyundai bound to attract a crowd is the new i30 N Project C - a limited-run reworking of the i30 N hot hatch featuring race-spec alloy wheels, carbonfibre-reinforced plastic components and a suspension drop. All good news, then, apart from the fact that only 600 are being built, and none are expected to come to the UK. 

Limited-run Hyundai i30 N Project C heading to Frankfurt

Lamborghini 

Hybrid hypercar

Lamborghini is readying a replacement for its Aventador flagship for 2020, and reports suggest it will be previewed by a low-volume, £2 million hybridised hypercar being revealed at Frankfurt. Prospective buyers got a look at the new model last year, but this would be the first time the car, codenamed LB48H, is shown in public. The Ferrari SF90 Stradale rival will pack a naturally aspirated V12 engine and an electric motor that will boost performance and efficiency. 

Next Aventador to be first hybrid V12 Lamborghini

Land Rover 

Defender

Is this the one everybody’s waiting for? The revived Land Rover Defender has made a number of high-profile public appearances since it was first seen in prototype form last year, but Frankfurt will be the first time we'll see it unwrapped. We already know it will arrive in three bodystyles, powered by a range of diesel and petrol engines, but its official unveiling will bring an end to months of industry debate as to whether it will do justice to the original model’s design ethos.

New Defender: everything we know so far

Mercedes-Benz 

EQV

Mercedes previewed the EQV electric people carrier with a concept at Geneva, and the production model will make its public debut at Frankfurt. Based on the conventionally powered V-Class, the EQV offers up to eight seats, a 252-mile range and a top speed of 99mph. Underfloor-mounted batteries allow the same interior flexibility as the V-Class, meaning it can be used as a luxury six-seat VIP shuttle or an eight-seat taxi. 

Mercedes-Benz EQV is 252-mile range premium electric MPV

ESF 2019 concept

The ESF concept is the latest in Mercedes’ long line of experimental vehicles built as part of an ongoing investigation into ways of making self-driving vehicles safer. Based on a forthcoming petrol-electric variant of the GLE SUV, the partly autonomous car features a retractable steering wheel and pedal box, revitalising mood lamps, an automatic driver’s seatbelt tensioner and prominent external directional indicators.

Mercedes unveils GLE-based experimental safety vehicle

Mercedes-AMG

GLB 35

Taking on Audi's new RS Q3 will be an Affalterbach-fettled version of Mercedes' new GLB compact SUV. In-top spec '45' guise, the hot high-rider will pack 416bhp from the brand's M139 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder unit, and feature the same 'Drift Mode' function as the recently launched A45 S hyper hatch, but it's the slightly less potent GLB 35 that's headed to Frankfurt. The model will feature the same 302bhp 2.0-litre mild hybrid unit as the A35, alongside a number of performance-inspired styling modifications. 

Hot Mercedes-AMG GLB SUV set for Frankfurt reveal

Mini 

Electric

Mini’s first series-production electric model bears a heavy resemblance to the 3dr Cooper upon which it’s based, but it’s the pricing and performance figures that have made the headlines. Prices start from just £24,000 after application of the government grant, although the car can't match the new Peugeot e-208 or Vauxhall Corsa-e for range. It will make its public debut at Frankfurt before production gets underway in November. 

First drive: 2019 Mini Electric driven on track

Porsche 

Taycan

Porsche will kick-start a £5.3 billion electrification programme with the official launch of its Taycan electric performance saloon at Frankfurt. The new Tesla Model S rival has been seen numerous times in minimal camouflage, and we’ve even been for a ride in it, but its unveiling is significant because it marks what Porsche UK boss Marcus Eckermann called “the beginning of a new era” for the Stuttgart brand. Little is known about the interior, but the exterior styling is heavily influenced by the Mission E concept of 2015.

Electric Porsche Taycan makes dynamic debut at Goodwood

Renault 

Captur

Renault has given the second generation Captur SUV a dramatic interior revamp in line with the tech-laden new Clio supermini. Like the Clio, exterior styling changes are mainly evolutionary, although Renault describes the new model as “muscular and more expressive” thanks to a redesigned front end and significant increase in size. Frankfurt is also expected to mark the debut of the plug-in E-Tech variant, which is due to go on sale in 2020. 

Renault updates big-selling Captur with new platform and interior

Skoda

Kamiq and Scala Monte Carlo 

Skoda is not expected to reveal any all-new models at this year's Frankfurt show, but will display a new Monte Carlo trim option for the Scala hatch and Kamiq compact SUV that celebrates the brand's rallying heritage.

As with the smaller Fabia (pictured), which has been available in Monte Carlo guise since 2011, the Kamiq and Scala receive black exterior trim elements and bespoke badging. 

Vauxhall 

Corsa

Niche Combo Life MPV aside, the new Corsa is the first Vauxhall to be developed since the brand came under PSA Group ownership in 2017. The supermini weighs up to 108kg less than its predecessor, and, like the Peugeot 208 with which it shares its platform, can be specced with petrol, diesel or electric powertrains. 

New Vauxhall Corsa: full engine range details released

Grandland X PHEV

Vauxhall will also show off its first plug-in hybrid - the Grandland X Hybrid4 - at Frankfurt. The compact SUV packs a 196bhp 1.6-litre petrol engine mated to two 108bhp electric motors for a combined output of 296bhp. A 13.2kWh battery gives an electric-only range of 31 miles and can be fully charged in just two hours with a 7.4kW home charger. 

New Vauxhall Grandland X Hybrid4 is brand's first PHEV

Volkswagen 

ID 3 

One of the most important new cars being unwrapped at Frankfurt is the new Volkswagen ID 3 electric hatchback. The brand’s first dedicated EV model is capable of 125kW fast-charging and manages a range of between 205 and 342 miles, depending on battery size. Three variants will be available, with prices for entry-level models starting at £25,000 - only slightly more than the Mini Electric, which can cover significantly fewer miles between charges.

Volkswagen ID 3: new Nissan Leaf rival seen barely disguised

New ID concept

Alongside the production ID 3, Volkswagen is expected to show a new electric car in concept form. Sales boss Jurgen Stackmann said it will give us "an idea of what’s coming next - and that’s clearly compact, because that’s what Volkswagen does", suggesting that the model could preview a previously confirmed value crossover, likely called the ID 2. Early details hint it will sit below the already-previewed Crozz SUV, with prices starting from under £18,000.

Volkswagen's sub-£18,000 electric car set for Frankfurt reveal

T-Roc Cabriolet

The T-Roc Cabriolet sits, essentially, on its own in the convertible compact SUV segment, and strengthens its unique position with a sub-£30k list price. Volkswagen intends for the new model to bring an "extroverted and emotive" element to its line-up, but has no immediate plans for more drop-top models. 

Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet is only mainstream convertible SUV

Read more

Volkswagen ID 3: early prototype review

Land Rover Defender: details of new Defender family leaked​

Frankfurt motor show news and updates

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Comments
10

26 July 2019

From this preview of potential new launches and 'upcoming' models I would say VAG is looking well placed to ride the electric vehicle surge wave that is undeniably coming. Only misguided pricing could cause a wipe-out, and ID 3 is surely the game changer Musk touted the Model 3 would be?

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