2018 Geneva International Motor Show - Worst In Show
We went a little gaga in our list of the best debuts from the 2018 Geneva International Auto Show, including no less than five honorable mentions in addition to our regular list of five winners. But, as is tradition, we must now don our collective troll faces and single out those rides that not only failed to make the cut, but also elicited our ire and dismay. So read on for our list of the Worst In Show from Switzerland this year, and don’t forget to post your opinion in the comments!
Continue reading for the worst debuts from the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show.
2018 Mercedes X-Class Camper Concept
The new Mercedes X-Class is lustful looking machine with an upscale vibe typical of the three-pointed start mixed with rugged capability thanks to its body-on-frame architecture and beefy solid rear axle. And despite the X-Class still being extremely new, aftermarket companies are already building interesting products for the pickup. Perhaps the most interesting is this – a slide in camper build specifically to the X-Class’ bed dimensions.
The camper is designed and built by the coachbuilder Tischer and features a main sleeping area over the cab, a three-person seating area that converts into a sleeping area, a kitchen with a three-burner stove, and a bathroom with a swivel toilet, fold-away sink, and a shower.
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The Mercedes-AMG Vision Gran Turismo Concept Is All Set For Its Hollywood Debut
Justice League is one of the most highly anticipated movies of the year, and a film of this magnitude is going to attract a lot of heavy, cross-brand promotional partnerships. This kind of collaboration is particularly prevalent in the superhero film genre. We’ve seen Audis in the Iron Man movies, and Avengers: Age of Ultron and Acura in the Thor movies, and The Avengers. The massive audiences generated by these movies is the perfect place for publicity and, with Justice League scheduled to hit theaters on November 17, Mercedes-Benz will be prominently featured in the movie, specifically the Mercedes-AMG Vision Gran Turismo Concept.
Yep. The same virtual car that the Silver Arrows presented back in 2013 for the Gran Turismo video game is now a movie star. Ok, that’s not entirely true because it’s not actually top-billing the movie., but it will play a prominent role as Bruce Wayne’s very own daily driver because that’s just how Batman rolls. Joining the Vision Gran Turismo Concept in the movie is the E-Class Cabriolet, which will be driven by no less than Diana Prince herself, who we know more popularly as Wonder Woman. The two Mercedes vehicles will play starring roles in the automaker’s partnership with the DC movie blockbuster, but it also won’t be Merc’s only involvement in the promotion of the movie. A series of commercials centered around Justice League will also be shown in the lead-up to the movie’s hyped up release. We literally have a little over a month before Justice League hits theaters all over the world so keep an eye out on all the Mercedes commercials featuring our favorite superhero in the coming weeks. The first one, called “Hard to Resist,” has already aired, and we can see it in all its glory in the video below.
2017 Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA
Although it has been toying with electric drivetrains for decades, Mercedes-Benz has unveiled more concept cars than production models up until now. The SLS AMG Electric Drive was its first important statement in the world of EVs, followed by the B-Class Electric Drive in 2014. In 2016, Mercedes-Benz announced its first family of battery-powered vehicles, called EQ, and a couple of new concept cars followed. One of them is the EQA, a compact hatchback that looks like an A-Class from the future.
Mercedes’ first EV in the compact segment, the Concept EQA joins Concept EQC, a small SUV that’s scheduled to move into production in 2019. There’s no word as to when the EQA will become a production model, but we do know that the German automaker intends to launch 10 EQ models by 2022. With that in mind, it’s safe to assume that the EQA will be one of the first to enter the market and could arrive in showrooms for the 2020 model year. Until we find out more, let’s have a closer look at the concept car in the review below.
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Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA Is an Electric A-Class from the Future
In 2016, Mercedes-Benz unveiled that all of its future electric cars will be sold under the EQ sub-brand. The strategy is similar to BMW’s, which now uses the i sub-brand for its EV lineup, which for the moment includes the i3 and i8. Last year, Mercedes also rolled out the Concept EQ, a sporty SUV that previewed what should become the company’s first all-electric hauler. Come 2017 and Mercedes unleashed its second EQ concept. Dubbed Concept EQA, it’s essentially an electric A-Class hatchback from the future.
A bit too futuristic for Mercedes’ currently lineup, the EQA is here to showcase what the next-generation A-Class could look like. At the same time, it confirms that EQ cars will share the same naming strategy as the regular models. Specifically, much like the all-electric A-Class will be called the EQA, EV versions of the C- and S-Class should be launched as the EQC and EQS. There’s no word as to when the first production EQ car will be launched, but don’t expect the sub-brand to debut sooner than the second half of 2018.
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Mercedes Let Us Down with the Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet
Now that we’ve seen Mercedes’ “latest” concept, I have to say that I’m not impressed in the least bit. When we first saw the teaser video back at the beginning of August,(art177208) I thought for sure we would get the “big surprise” that Chief Designer Gorgon Wagener promised us. This concept was supposed to be an “icon for the brand,” but all I see is a lazy concept that was thrown together just a few weeks before it was set to debut… Did you forget there was a concept lawn at Pebble Beach, Mr. Wagener? Now I’m wondering if that teaser video from within the bowels of the Advance Design Center was actually the very first meeting to discuss the new concept.
With that said, I will say that the Vision 6 looks good as a droptop, but it definitely falls short of what was promised. In the video, it was even mentioned that the front end would be “different.” Of course, they were talking about in comparison to the Concept IAA, but still. In the end, the Vision 6 Cabriolet is every bit the Vision 6 with a standalone windshield and no roof. Of course, they did change the interior a bit to account for a slightly revised dashboard with a set of HVAC vents in the center – that’s something the coupe doesn’t have. It is also a bit less futuristic in comparison but still far on the red side of my “never-gonna-see-production” meter. The car itself is attractive, and I even love the scheme of the interior, but when I saw the similarities in Merc’s second teaser video, I should have known. But, I don’t want to be all negative, so let’s move on from this rant and talk about something good that comes from this specific concept.
2017 Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 Cabriolet
Revived for the second time in 2014, this time around as Mercedes-Maybach, Stuttgart’s super premium firm is on a roll, now offering no fewer than five different models. There are the S500 and S600 sedans, the longer S600 Pullman, the G650 Landaulet SUV, and the S650 Cabriolet. Maybach is also doing well as far as concept cars go, with the stunning Vision 6 getting everyone excited about a big luxury coupe we might see in showrooms in a few years. Now, Mercedes-Maybach turned the Vision 6 into a convertible, signaling that this concept is moving closer to becoming a production model.
Unveiled at the 2017 Monterey Car Week, the Vision 6 Cabriolet was previewed by a coupe of teasers that made everyone think of something entirely different. While most speculated that Mercedes is launching a brand-new concept, it turned out that Maybach simply chopped the roof off the Vision 6. But while it may sound a bit disappointing, it’s proof that the Germans have big plans for the Vision 6. This could also mean that Maybach may get a standalone model that’s larger and more luxurious than theS-Class Coupe. Just like in the good old days when Maybach was an independent firm and competed against the likes of Rolls-Royce, Cadillac, and Duesenberg. But, until that happens, let’s see what the Vision 6 Cabriolet brings to the table.
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Mercedes Teases Its New Concept For Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
Just a few days ago, Mercedes gave us a big shock when it posted a short video of its design team in a meeting, essentially giving us the low down to expect a new sports car concept when Pebble Beach Concours D’elegance kicks off on August 20, 2017. At the time, they failed to give us any information at all, aside from Gorden Wagener – the Chief Designer – saying that it will be an “icon of the brand” and a “big surprise.” Along with those words were just a couple of sketches on the table ahead of them that depicted a red sports car of sorts and a wheel design. There were also sketches of the IAA concept in the mix as well, pointing to the possibility that the new concept could share some DNA with it, but it was mentioned that the front end was going to be dramatically different. Now, Mercedes has released an official teaser of its upcoming concept and, while it doesn’t give us much information, it is rather intriguing, to say the least.
First off, you can see the wheel that was displayed in the sketch from the first video. It actually looks quite sporty and appears to have some 24 thin spokes, so it’s essentially going to roll on the German version of wire wheels. At the beginning of the video, we see a slanted silhouette view of the car from the beltline up, exposing a long flat roof that gently curves to the rear. Meanwhile, the body line just below the belt line is long and slightly curved, which should bring some exquisite elegance to the concept, to say the least. The video then quickly pans to the front end where we get to see an unmistakably long hood with excessively sharp body lines and a Mercedes emblem perched at the tip – clearly something that points to this being one luxurious vehicle and probably outside of the confines of most of our pockets, should it make it into production. The interior actually looks a little bland but features some copper or gold trim and a chrome steering wheel. The instrument cluster consists of just two gauges while tall center console quite literally separates passenger from the driver. So, what is this car really going to be? Keep reading to see the short video and to hear more about it.
2017 Mercedes-Benz Concept A Sedan
Mercedes-Benz was quite the busy bee at the 2017 Shanghai Auto Show, where it unveiled three updated cars, the S-Class, AMG S63, and AMG S65. But, the German firm also showcased a concept, one that may open the door to a new niche. I’m talking about the Concept A Sedan, which provides "an outlook of the next generation of compact vehicles and a potential new body type." In short, Mercedes is considering a sedan version of the A-Class.
Surprisingly enough for a brand that created quite a few niches, most notably with the CLA and CLS four-door coupes, Mercedes is behind the competition when it comes to sedans based on compact hatchbacks. While Audi has been selling the A3 Sedan since 2013 and BMW introduced the 1 Series Sedan in China in 2017, Mercedes has yet to create a sedan version of the A-Class. But it seems the folks over in Stuttgart want to change that, and the A-Class sedan could become a reality with the next-generation model in a couple of years.
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Mercedes Concept A Sedan Confirms Four-Door A-Class
Mercedes-Benz can be credited with inventing several niches in the auto market recently, most notably with the CLS and CLA four-door coupes (and their Shooting Brake/wagon variants). However, the German firm fell behind the competition in the smaller sedan market. While Audi has been selling the A3 Sedan since 2013 and BMW recently introduced the 1 Series Sedan in China, Stuttgart has yet to launch a similar offering. But, this will end soon and the Concept A Sedan that Mercedes unveiled at the 2017 Shanghai Auto Show proves that a four-door smaller than the CLA is in the works.
As you might have already guessed from the name, the Concept A Sedan previews a sedan version of the familiar A-Class. However, the production model won’t arrive until the fourth-generation hatchback is launched, which should happen in a couple of years. Although Mercedes-Benz didn’t actually confirm the A-Class sedan, the concept is described as "an outlook of the next generation of compact vehicles and a potential new body type." Take this statement and the fact that both Audi, and BMW have cars in this segment, and the A-Class sedan is pretty certain to happen.
As with all concepts, the Concept A Sedan is rather futuristic compared to the current-generation A-Class. While the front bumper and grille are very familiar, the styling is decidedly sportier and has an AMG-GT vibe to it. In the company’s own words, the concept "shows that the time of creases is over" and is "the next milestone of ’Sensual Purity’ and has the potential to introduce a new design era."
All told, the show car could very well preview the design of the upcoming A-Class hatchback before finding its way onto the production sedan. On the other hand, I wouldn’t bet on them being as aggressive as the concept. I also don’t expect the UV-treated headlamps, which "glow" in different colors depending on light, to become a production feature.
However, Mercedes gives us a few hints as to how large this compact sedan will be. At 179.9 inches long and 73.6 inches wide, it’s almost 11 inches longer and 3.5 inches wider than the current A-Class sedan. Compared to the CLA, it’s only three inches shorter, but 3.5 inches wider. As expected, it slots right below the CLA, but the production model will probably be a bit shorter than the concept. On the other hand, a similar length could work as the CLA is marketed as a four-door coupe, while the A-Class sedan will be sold as a conventional four-door.
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2017 Mercedes-AMG GT Concept
It’s been known for quite some time now that Mercedes-AMG had its eye on releasing a four-door performance saloon that would compete against the popular Porsche Panamera. It took some time, but the car finally showed its face at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, albeit in concept guise. Called the AMG GT Concept, the four-door coupe was unveiled as a preview model for the upcoming production version that’s expected to arrive in the next few years.
The significance of the AMG GT Concept isn’t limited to the car simply being a production preview of the yet-to-be-named Panamera fighter. The model is also the latest in a growing family of AMG GT models that’s shaping AMG as a legitimate performance brand that’s slowly gaining independence from Mercedes-Benz. So yes, the AMG GT Concept is a big deal in a lot of ways, as it should be considering Mercedes has some claim to pioneering the performance the four-door saloon market when it first launched the CLS-Class back in 2004.
The times are sure different now as the segment has evolved into a pretty competitive one with the likes of the Porsche Panamera, BMW 7 Series, Maserati Quattroporte, and even the Tesla Model S all making legitimate claims for themselves as worthy options. But don’t sleep on Mercedes returning to form and reclaiming its top spot in this segment. It may do so under a different name, but rest assured, the AMG GT Concept, or at least the production version of it, is going to pick up the fight for the Silver Arrows once it arrives. We’re getting a good look at what we can expect from Mercedes-AMG; now we wait and see for the production model to arrive.
Continue after the jump to read more about the Mercedes-AMG GT Concept
Mercedes-AMG GT Concept Is the Beefed-Up, 4-Door Sports Car You’ve Been Asking For
The relatively new Mercedes-AMG GT sports car has already spawned numerous iterations, including convertibles, the track-ready R, as well as a race-spec model, but the German brand still has big plans with the nameplate. In the rumor mill for a couple of years, the four-door version has just been confirmed by a new concept car that Mercedesconvertibles, just unveiled at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show.
While the Mercedes-AMG GT Concept name might not say much — or it may lead you to believe it’s another version of the coupe — it is in fact not just a four-door model, but also one that uses electricity to move about.
A quick glance is enough to understand why it bears the "AMG GT" badge. The sedan is obviously based on the coupe and share many styling features with the two-door. However, the design language has been upgraded to better suit a Mercedes sedan, which has to be elegant above anything else.
Up front, both the grille and the bumper are closely related to the coupe, but the headlamps are slimmer and stretch toward the wheelarches instead of having the sweptback design seen on the regular AMG GT. The car’s profile is obviously longer due to the extra two door, but the roof line is pretty sleek and resembles that of a coupe. I’d say it’s somewhere between the CLS and the CLS Shooting Brake, as it doesn’t leave much room for a decklid, but it’s not a wagon either. Around back, both the taillights and the trunk lid are heavily based on the AMG GT, but the bumper seems more massive. Underneath, there’s a carbon-fiber diffuser with a massive exhaust pipe in the middle.
All told, while it comes in a four-door sedan configuration, the concept is by no means mundane and it’s comparable to the coupe in terms of aggressiveness. But unlike other concepts, it’s menacing looks are backed by an impressive drivetrain and mind-blowing performance.
Bearing the new "EQ Power+" designation that Mercedes introduced with the latest Formula One car, the AMG GT Concept pairs the existing twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8 engine with a powerful electric motor. There’s no specific information about either of them, but Mercedes says that the combo generates up to 600 kW, which converts to a whopping 804 horsepower. That’s 348 horses more than the base AMG GT coupe and 227 horsepower more than the range-topping GT R. The concept is also around 130 horses more powerful than the newly launched Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, which speaks volumes of what Mercedes wants to achieve in this niche. More impressively, AMG expects the sedan to hit 60 mph from a standing start in less than three seconds. That’s supercar-like acceleration right there!
Of course, there’s more to talk about beyond the powerful drivetrain, but we’ll take a closer look at the concept car in our upcoming review.
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