Now the dust has settled it’s clear that this Frankfurt show is a cracker. Not a day goes by when we aren’t reminded of the doom and gloom in the car industry but yet somehow this motoring jamboree has thrown up a mind-boggling array of brand new metal.
With this in mind I’ve thrown together my top five stars of the world’s biggest motor show, but I wholeheartedly reserve the right to change it at any time.
First up is the Ferrari 458. It seems an obvious choice but for me this is the most resolved and intriguing Ferrari styling for quite some time. What is captivating is how it is both modern with a hint of seventies never-to-be-made concept that is straight out of my childhood Hot Wheels collection.
Few stands this year would be without some kind of green technology, but VW's Bluemotion range makes the rest look overcomplicated. The new Polo Bluemotion in particular has a conventional 74bhp 1.2-litre engine longer gearing, stop-start technology and regenerative brakes to achieve emissions of 87g/km of Co2 and average 85.6mpg. At the moment this seems like a simple and logical solution.
The Mercedes SLS took a bit of a kicking on our forums and seems to have had less time in the limelight than it should. I’m not even a huge fan of Mercedes sports cars if a Porsche is an option, and retro touches often seem contrived, but the SLS is a gorgeous and refreshingly different take on the entry-level supercar.
The Superb is a great car but even Skoda admits it only really sells well in the business sector. The estate version remedies any image problems in my opinion. Load-luggers have their own style and this won’t need to occupy space in the executive car sector. The Skoda Superb estate is roomy, good-looking, cheap and covered in clever touches. Volvo better watch out.
Finally the Maserati GranCabrio. Seeing this car today reminded me how far the company has come in the last few years. A classy car on a classy stand – Maserati is now a main player, rather than an obscure and flawed alternative.
That’s my five – how about yours?