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4 December 2009

The LA motor show dominated the pages of this week. Although genuinely new metal was few and far between, Porsche launched its Boxster Spyder - which we also got to drive - while there were also US launches for the Ford Fiesta and Chevrolet Cruze.

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Two concepts were perhaps the most interesting cars to come out of LA. VW's Up! Lite is capable of 116mpg and should be made within the next three years. Honda's P-NUT was a 1+2 urban concept, but don't expect to see it made any time soon.

The Capstone CMT380 Hybrid was the unsung star of LA. It ran on a unique combination of lithium ion batteries and a diesel-powered micro-turbine engine and is capable of more than 50mpg.

Away from LA, Audi showed off its new A8 saloon in Miami, while we also found out just how much the Aston Martin Rapide and Bentley Mulsanne will set you back - £139,950 and £220,000 respectively. In a busy week for Nissan, it confirmed the GT-R Spec V would be coming to Europe, while we also got to see the Qashqai's facelift.

Alfa Romeo eventually decided on calling its 147 replacement Giulietta, after ducking out of calling it Milano at the last minute due to grumbles withing its Milan-based workforce.

BMW's X1 failed to impress as we thought it would in this week's road test, while we also got to drive a very special Mini - the £33k JCW Championship 50 - and got to test Porsche's 911 Turbo in the UK for the first time.

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