FITTINGLY, it was a Volkswagen that made the VW Group Night event on the eve of the Geneva motor show worth going to. While much of the metal that rolled across the stage had already been revealed, the Sport Coupe Concept GTE hadn’t.
This big, four-door coupe, which looks like an edgy Audi A5 Sportback, previews a new design language for VW and a potential new model line. “It’s meant to close the gap between the Passat and the Phaeton,” VW board member Dr Heinz-Jakob Neusser explained.
Bentley was the other VW Group brand to deliver a little surprise and delight with a good looking two-seat coupe concept. The EXP 10 Speed 6 concept, “demonstrates where Bentley is going to be heading,” according to the company’s tech chief, Rolf Frech.
Bugatti and Bentley boss Wolfgang Durheimer confirmed that big-capacity and high-power engines have a future in the two brands. Bentley’s W12 will get a higher maximum power output in standard form and cylinder deactivation tech. Presenting the La Finale Bugatti Veyron, the last of 450 of the money-losers to be built, the exec promised its successor would use an even more powerful development of the Veyron’s quad-turbo W16. “With the next Bugatti, we will underline our claim to leadership,” Durheimer said.
Lamborghini rolled out a more powerful, lighter version of the Aventador, the LP750-4 SV. The car features an aero package that sharp-dressing CEO Stephan Winkelmann says delivers a 170 percent increase in downforce.
There will be more members of Porsche’s GT family besides the new Cayman GT4, company chief Matthias Muller revealed. The new model brings the current number of hard-core Porsche models to two. “I promise you, the GT family will continue to grow,” Muller teased.
Other cast members of the carefully stage-managed, hour-long show for around 3000 journalists had been revealed ahead of time, including the Audi R8, Ducati Multistrada, Skoda Superb, and VW Caddy and Touran.
VW was also able to use the Group Night to highlight Passat winning European Car of the Year, at an event only a few hours ahead of Group Night.