Autocar staffers pick their standout machines from the vast halls of the Frankfurt show
13 September 2017

As ever, this year’s Frankfurt motor show featured a feast of shiny new metal, ranging from city runarounds to crazy concept cars, with a host of limited-run specials and outlandish hypercars thrown in for good measure.

Autocar’s team racked up the miles trawling the vast halls of the Messe Frankfurt to check out all the new machines, which you can read about in our live blog or by looking at our Frankfurt motor show news feed.

While working through the coverage, we asked our reporters in Frankfurt and those co-ordinating our coverage back at Autocar Towers in Twickenham to pick out their show stars.

Let us know what your show stars were in the comments below.

2017 Frankfurt motor show: report, video and gallery

Jim Holder - Renault Megane RS

The £30k-ish hot hatch market has surely never been more competitive - or interesting. Just weeks after being blown away by the new Honda Civic Type R, we've got the Renault Mégane RS to contemplate. Its power output is dwarfed by that of rivals, but four-wheel steer and the golden glow of the previous-generation car promise hitherto unseen levels of ride and handling delicacy. Whatever autonomy and electrification brings, we can always rock in our chairs and say we lived through a golden era for the hot hatch.

Steve Cropley - Ford Mustang

For me, the 2018 Ford Mustang V8 with its more aggressive nose, LED lights, upgraded interior, 10% power boost and wider, wilder selection of colours provided a welcome refuge from all the worthy electrification going on at Frankfurt. Cars like this used to be the norm, and now they're the unusual ones. As someone who was practically born in the shadow of a Ford V8 badge (my grandad was a Ford dealer), the sight of that big, muscular yellow coupé revolving on its turntable was akin to coming home.

Richard Bremner – Mini GP Concept 

It looks wild and borderline odd with those vertical vanes flanking its wings, but it’s good to see a fresh look for a hot Mini. It’s a concept, but don’t be surprised to see a third-generation Mini GP emerge out of this. Perhaps with vanes, too.

Julian Rendell - Porsche Cayenne Turbo

Taking a ‘family guy’ stance to my selection, the new Porsche Cayenne Turbo consolidates its appeal with a new, more mature styling, low-slung stance, sports car performance and family hauler practicality. Sehr gut!

Matt Prior - Kia Proceed

What a handsome-looking estate car. No one buys three-door hatches anyway, but they are starting to buy fancy-dan coupé-like estates, like the Mercedes CLA. So Kia showing this indicates that it knows which way the wind is blowing. If it drops the three-door Cee'd with the next generation, this could be a nice extra bodystyle.

Sam Sheehan - Jaguar I-Pace racer

I sometimes think I’m the only person in the world who enjoys watching Formula E racing. The cars aren’t fast, but the racing is intense and I like how close you can get to the action as a spectator. Good news is the newly announced Jaguar eTrophy, and its field of 20 I-Pace racers could turn the wick up further. I’m hoping for BTCC-like bumper banging and post-race punch-ups. Not sure if it’ll be universally loved, but it gets my thumbs-up.

Mark Tisshaw - Suzuki Swift Sport

The new Swift has disappointed me with its loss of charm and character over the old one. The new Swift Sport, and its sub-1000kg weight, torquey new engine, beefier looks and promise of sharper handling honed on northern England roads, goes some way to redressing that. Don't let us down again, Suzuki.

Rachel Burgess - Honda Urban EV

There are no powertrain details, range or price indication for the upcoming electric city car, which will make production in 2019. But nonetheless, most of my peers agreed: this was one of the best-styled cars at Frankfurt. With looks reminiscent of the VW Golf Mk1 but with a modern edge, we can but hope this doesn’t lose all its charm by the time it appears on our roads.

Andrew Frankel - Mercedes-AMG Project One 

Gets my vote because it proves that when Mercedes said it was going to put an F1 engine in a road car, it wasn't joking. The heads, pistons, valves, crank, cams, split turbo, MGU-K and MGU-H energy recovery systems are all the same as on Lewis’s F1 car. Yet it will sit in a Dubai traffic jam. In August. Bravo.

Jimi Beckwith - Mini Electric concept

The Mini Electric has the potential to transform this British stalwart into Mini 3.0; where 1.0 was the iconic original, and 2.0 was the hugely successful BMW reboot. Think about it; all the handling fizz, kitsch, charming and charismatic looks and dinky (ish) size, combined with the packaging advantages of the electric powertrain. Could this be a return the original Mini's ideologies, lost in the BMW throwback’s retro flab? I certainly think so.

Sam Jenkins - Audi R8 RWS

Audi has finally parted with four-wheel drive in the R8, albeit for a limited-run car. A mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive, naturally aspirated V10 monster is a pleasure to see among the vast amounts of electrification. Nice move, Audi.

Tom Evans - Audi Aicon

A car that moves the luxury car game on. Fully autonomous, inside it takes advantage of not having user controls to repackage the car as a modern, moving luxury living room. Outside, compared with the deeply conservative exterior of the new Audi A8, it is amazing to think something like this could conceivably replace it in 2025.

Greg Kable - BMW iVision Dynamic

BMW’s upcoming Tesla-fighting i5, previewed by the i Vision Dynamics concept, has significance well beyond its bold kidney grille and racy silhouette. The new electric-powered four-door saloon, promising a 0-62mph time of 4.0sec and 373-mile range, sets the tone for what BMW expects to become one of its biggest-selling models within the next decade.

James Attwood - Wey XEV concept

You can’t accuse the Wey XEV concept of being a traditional Chinese copycat car; it’s very definitely a unique design. Which is probably a good thing: it's distinctive and eye-catching, but not exactly beautiful. While it’s unlikely to enter production looking like this, it’s certainly a sign of intent for parent company Great Wall’s ambitions if the firm decides to bring it to the European market, and it could show the Wey forward (sorry) for other Chinese firms.

Related stories: 

Mercedes-AMG Project One revealed 

Megane RS revealed with four-wheel-steer

Audi RS4 Avant revealed 

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Comments
9

13 September 2017

​The Cayanne isnt for families, its for off roading, surely a motoring journalist should know that, if you want a family car you buy an estate or an MPV - @ Julian Rendell. Unfortunately, nothing about the Electric Mini shows ANY sign of returning to the original's ideologies - @ Jimi Beckwith . The WEY XEV aint beasutiful but it deffo is interesting - @ James Attwood. Really like the Honda Urban EV - @ Rachel Burgess.                 

15 September 2017

The Cayenne is probably the 'ultimate' family car, nothing comes close. It is not 'for' off roading - it 'can' go off roading. 

A Landrover Defender is 'for' off roading. Get a grip.

13 September 2017

Errm.. I'm recently married and starting a family. Top of my shopping list is a nice 2 year old Cayenne Turbo. Test drove a Range Sport SVR and while it sounds great it just isn't as good behind the wheel. In addition I have a friend who has two Sports and reports all sorts of niggles with them, including a sat nav that twice has blacked out during rainy weather (silly as it may sound). I have no idea why they're not a family car in your opinion, they have the space and practicality and are good to drive. I'd prefer an RS6 (had one before) but the wife wants the higher driving position. We go skiing a few times over the winter so want a bit of ground clearance and 4wd. Seems to check all the relevant boxes to me, except a new one is expensive enough I'd rather spend the 2 years of depreciation on a toy.

13 September 2017

They've managed to make it look uglier and more like a Mazda, well done 

13 September 2017

That Honda Urban looks like the little automatic Civic hatch i drove back in the 80's. Much fun for all.

13 September 2017

All American cars are giant turds!

Please never forget that.

14 September 2017

Rear Wheel Steering?

14 September 2017

Who would want to consider buying a Honda EV given the total unreliability of Honda F1 engine and thier failure to master this new technology.

jellybeeetle

14 September 2017

Who chooses who gets to write about which car?

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