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2013 Frankfurt International Motor Show

Mean and green: High-performance hybrids, like Toyota's Yaris Hybrid-R, will feature amongst offerings from every manufacturer at the world's biggest motor show.

Frankfurt is the biggest motor show on the planet and 2013 promises to be huge

16 Sep 2013


The curtain has come down on another massive Frankfurt motor show - and this year the German automotive showcase maintained its reputation as the biggest, and some say best, in the world.

The sheer number of concepts from the major European car-makers highlighted the improving economic situation on the continent, while technological advancements and green powertrains provided a glimpse at the future of these automotive heavyweights.

Audi's pair of performance-car concepts won early fans, with the striking Guigiaro-penned, turbo-diesel Nanuk proving to be the only real surprise of the show.

Volvo got the jump on its rivals early by revealing its stunning Concept Coupe two weeks prior to the show commencing. The Swedish car-maker used it to preview its future design direction that will be seen on the 2014 XC90 family SUV.

Another brand that gave a glimpse into the not-too distant future was Citroen, with its Cactus concept hinting at the next-generation C3 light car. Fellow French car-maker Renault previewed the 2015 Espace MPV with the sleek Initiale Paris concept.

Jaguar finally confirmed one of the worst kept secrets in the car industry when it revealed it would build an SUV, based on the C-X17 concept.

Asian car-makers flexed their muscle at Frankfurt too, with Kia showcasing its funky and chunky Niro crossover concept, that could make it to production depending on the reaction from punters.

The unlikely star of Toyota's stand was the tiny Yaris Hybrid-R concept, which combines three electric motors with a 1.6-litre turbo four-cylinder engine in an all-wheel drive format for a total power output of 313kW. While it is not mooted for production, Toyota said some of the hybrid technology would wind up in future models.

One of the less extreme but more crucial reveals was Nissan's all-new X-Trail SUV that is scheduled for a local showroom arrival in mid-2014. The Japanese car-maker ripped the covers off the larger, more streamlined design but was sure to point out that it will maintain the off-road ability of the current model.

Check out the stories from the show by clicking on the links to the right.

THE German city of Frankfurt has welcomed the media and punters alike to its biennial motor show, and it lived up to its reputation as the biggest event of its kind on the planet.

The running theme has been alternate-fuel cars – EV and hydrogen – and autonomous vehicles that drive themselves. With economists projecting a gradual improvement in Europe’s economic fortunes, a sense of optimism hung in the air on the media days.

As is the modern way, most car-makers showed their hands by revealing concepts and new releases prior to the show doors opening, but there was one shock reveal during the first media day.

German car-maker Audi stunned the crowd by tearing the covers off its unannounced Nanuk coupe concept, featuring a 400kW mid-mounted V10 turbo-diesel engine and a striking design co-penned by Italian design house Guigiaro.

It was the second coupe concept to feature an Audi badge, following the previously announced Sport Quattro petrol-electric plug-in hybrid supercar that was built to mark the 30th anniversary of the original Sport Quattro that made its first appearance at the 1983 Frankfurt show.

Not one to be outdone, fellow German giant Mercedes-Benz revealed its S-Class Coupe concept, while BMW showcased its plans for a greener future with the production version of its i8 plug-in hybrid supercar and a petrol-electric X5 SUV.

Other European brands such as Renault, Citroen and Volvo have revealed concepts previewing next-generation models, while Asian car-makers such as Kia and Toyota signalled their intentions with genre-defying concepts.

Check out the stories from the show by clicking on the links to the right.

HI-PO hybrids will feature at this year’s show with BMW and Toyota both set to unveil petrol/electric sportscars.

Producing 170kW from just 1.5-litres, the BMW i8’s three-cylinder turbo petrol drives the rear wheels and is the most powerful engine per-litre ever produced by the Munich manufacturer.

An electric motor drives the front wheels and tops up the total power to 266kW while relatively low weight for a battery-carrying hybrid of 1500kg ensures zippy performance.

BMW may also have had involvement with Toyota’s pre-announced Frankfurt hybrid showcar, following an agreement in July to jointly develop a sportscar.

According to Toyota, the “exciting new concept for road and track” will borrow the Le Mans proven powertrain from the TS030 racecar while BMW says it is contributing its experience in “efficient, highly dynamic premium vehicles”.

This year’s show isn’t all about hyper hybrids though.

First glimpses of more practical and affordable models are chalked for Frankfurt with Honda choosing to show off the new wagon version of its Civic, and Suzuki will pull the covers off a concept, mooted to be a replacement for the Jimny.

Infiniti’s imminent small-segment contender concept has been confirmed as the Q30 and is aimed at buyers looking to smaller, more efficient cars while Kia plans to appeal to more European styling tastes with its, as yet, unnamed concept.

19/12/12FRANKFURT hosts the world’s biggest motor show every two years, alternating with Paris. In 2013, it is Germany’s time to shine with the 65th Frankfurt International Motor Show, with all of the world’s major motor companies turning out in force with new models to be presented on the global stage.

GoAuto will have more stories leading up to and during the show so keep checking GoAuto.com.au for updates

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