2019 Geneva Motor Show: Ultra-Performance Rides

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceUltra Performance
The annual Geneva Motor Show is well known for showcasing some of the highest-performance vehicles in the world, and this year’s show certainly didn’t disappoint. Whether in concept form or ready to hit the open road (or track), the offerings from companies such as Koenigsegg, Rimac, Bentley and McLaren were enough to get the heart pumping, and many of these vehicles boast more than 1000 horsepower — yes, one thousand horsepower. Take a fast look at the high-performance highlights from the 2019 Geneva Motor Show.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceALPINA B7
ALPINA has been creating high-performance exclusive vehicles based on BMWs for more than 50 years, and this year in Geneva the company showcased its latest creation, the ALPINA B7. Based on the all-new BMW 7 Series, the 2019 ALPINA B7 takes the already impressive luxury sedan and upgrades both styling and performance. Still wearing the very large BMW kidney grille, the B7 features functional air intakes and ALPINA lettering up front, as well as polished stainless-steel quad tailpipes and a spoiler at the rear. The classic ALPINA 20-inch forged wheels with Michelin Super Sport tires complete the high-performance styling.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceALPINA B7
Under the hood of the ALPINA B7 lurks a Biturbo 4.4-liter V8 engine producing 608 horsepower and a prodigious 590 lb-ft of torque — a significant jump in power over the standard 7 Series. With this much power on tap, the ALPINA B7 can reach 60 mph in 3.6 seconds with a top speed of 205 mph. Power is sent to the wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission that has been adapted by ALPINA to match with the engine’s performance characteristics. Helping to control all that thrust is BMW’s xDrive all-wheel-drive system with ALPINA calibration, as well as a two-axle air suspension system and rear-wheel steering.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAston Martin AM-RB 003
Just as deliveries are beginning for the extreme Aston Martin Valkyrie, the British marque took the wraps off the Valkyrie’s successor at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Called the AM-RB 003 — the RB represents Red Bull’s involvement in the project — this new model features all the performance expected of a hypercar but with a bit more practicality. The center console has been widened to provide more space between driver and passenger, and there is even some luggage space behind the seats. Aston designers also added other small storage spaces for phones and similar items. It seems odd to address comfort and luggage capacity in a vehicle such as the AM-RB 003 — but then again, it IS an Aston Martin.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAston Martin AM-RB 003
Although there’s no denying that AM-RB 003 is one sexy-looking machine, the shape and design are driven by aerodynamics. While most of the downforce is generated from the underfloor, this hypercar also makes use of next-generation aircraft morphing technology that can create a variable airfoil across the entire rear wing. Full details about AM-RB 003’s powertrain are not being released at this time, although motivation will come from an all-new Aston Martin turbocharged V6 hybrid engine. Given that the Valkyrie boasts more than 1100 horsepower, educated musings suggest that engine power for AM-RB 003 will be in a similar realm. The AM-RB 003 on display in Geneva is still considered a prototype — design and features will continue to evolve until the vehicle is ready for production in late 2021.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAston Martin Vanquish Concept
Mid-engine sports cars were the big news at the Aston Martin display in Geneva. Alongside the Valkyrie, Valkyrie AMR Pro and new AM-RB 003, the British marque showed a fourth mid-engine sports car: the Vanquish Vision Concept. The Vanquish has been Aston’s flagship sports car, so it seems fitting that this name returns to the lineup for such an exotic new model. As Aston Martin Director of Design Miles Nurnberger noted, “The Vanquish Vision Concept has a more seductive and less technical appearance than Aston Martin Valkyrie and AM-RB 003, but it’s still extreme in terms of visual gestures.”

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAston Martin Vanquish Concept
Technical details are still a bit scarce and will remain so until further development occurs on this new model, but we do know it will be powered by a version of Aston Martin’s new V6 engine that will be used as part of the hybrid system in the AM-RB 003. The vehicle will be built on a unique bonded-aluminum chassis. Aston’s Chief Technical Officer Max Szwaj observed, “The Vanquish Vision Concept is the point when the things we have learned during the Aston Martin Valkyrie and AM-RB 003 programs reach the series production models. Creating a car like this for Aston Martin is a challenge I have relished since joining back in 2017.” Aston Martin expects the production version of this new exotic to arrive in 2022.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBugatti Chiron 110 ANS
Bugatti is celebrating its 110th anniversary, and to commemorate this milestone the legendary brand is introducing a special edition Bugatti Chiron Sport — the “110 ans Bugatti.” Finished in a two-tone color scheme with exposed Steel Blue carbon fiber and matte Steel Blue, the Bugatti Chiron Sport “110 ans Bugatti” pays tribute to France with exterior and interior elements utilizing the French Tricolor — the three colors of blue, white and red found in the French flag. On the exterior, the mirror caps, underside of the deployable rear spoiler and “110 ans Bugatti” logos all feature the blue, white and red, while many interior elements also incorporate the French Tricolor.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBugatti Chiron 110 ANS
Underneath the matte Steel Blue and Steel Blue Carbon engine cover of the Bugatti Chiron Sport “110 ans Bugatti” lurks an awesome 8.0-liter W16 engine with quad turbochargers producing 1500 horsepower and 1180 lb-ft of torque, with all that power delivered through a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system. According to Bugatti performance figures, the Chiron Sport “110 ans Bugatti” will accelerate from zero to 62 mph in 2.4 seconds, reach 124 mph in 6.1 seconds, and 186 mph in 13.1 seconds. Maximum speed is 261 mph. The production run of this Bugatti Chiron Sport “110 ans Bugatti” will be limited to a mere 20 cars.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFerrari F8 Tributo
The two-seat mid-engine V8-powered Ferrari has been one of the most coveted sports cars in the world for years, and this year in Geneva Ferrari debuted the newest and most powerful version ever: the Ferrari F8 Tributo. The new Ferrari model name pays tribute to the signature mid-engine V8 layout. Replacing the 488 GTB model in the Ferrari lineup, the Ferrari F8 Tributo traces its history back to the classic Ferrari 308 GTB of the 1970s as the most powerful, aerodynamic and sophisticated model to date. Designed by the Ferrari Styling Centre, the F8 Tributo offers a new design with emphasis on high performance and aerodynamic improvement. The new aerodynamic package developed on the track includes elements adopted from the 488 Pista, with a 10 percent improvement in aerodynamic efficiency.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFerrari F8 Tributo
The F8 Tributo boasts the most powerful V8 engine in Ferrari history for a series-production model. The 3.9-liter turbocharged 90-degree V8 produces 710 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque — 50 more horses than the outgoing 488 GTB. According to Ferrari, the F8 Tributo will sprint to 62 mph in a mere 2.9 seconds, reaching 124 mph in 7.8 seconds with a top speed of 210 mph. In addition to the impressive increase in power output, the Ferrari F8 Tributo is lighter, more aerodynamic and easier to control at the limit with the latest version of Side Slip Angle Control.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceGinetta Akula
Ginetta may not be well known in America, but the British company has been around since 1958. The company has become known for hand-built road and race cars used in every level of competition around the world. With extensive racing experience garnered over the years, Ginetta has announced it will build an all-new street-legal supercar called the Akula. “Starting with a blank sheet of paper allowed us to create a true mid-mid engine design with an all carbon monocoque, LMP-derived aerodynamics and an in-house designed powertrain resulting in a driver-orientated package for the road,” said Lawrence Tomlinson, chairman of Ginetta.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceGinetta Akula
This sleek sport coupe is powered by an ultra-lightweight 6.0-liter V8 engine that will produces at least 600 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. The engine is constructed in-house from a single block of billet aluminum. The Akula-specific drivetrain was also designed in-house. The Akula features a full carbon fiber monocoque chassis as well as body panels in carbon fiber. Just 20 copies of the Akula will be built, and the price is set at £283,333.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHispano Suiza Carmen
One hundred and fifteen years ago, Damián Mateu and Marc Birkigt founded a car company in Barcelona called Hispano-Suiza. Until the mid-1940s the company turned out more than 12,000 luxury automobiles. After what would be considered a rather lengthy hiatus, the company is back with an all-new model on display at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Named for Carmen Mateu — the granddaughter of the company’s founder and mother of the current president — the Carmen is a fully-electric luxury hypercar. Styling is heavily influenced by early Hispano-Suiza models, particularly the 1938 Hispano-Suiza H6C Dubonnet Xenia, of which only one was ever produced.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHispano Suiza Carmen
While the Carmen may look to the past for style, the powertrain is definitely looking to the future. Working with QEV Technologies, Hispano Suiza has outfitted the Carmen with two electric motors — one on each rear wheel — that combine to generate just over 1000 horsepower. Power is controlled via a sophisticated torque-vectoring system, allowing the Carmen to rocket to 62 mph in less than three seconds. The 80 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack should provide range of around 250 miles. Only 19 Carmens will be built — at a price set at €1.5 million. Deliveries are expected to start in June 2020.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceKoenigsegg Jesko
At this year’s Geneva Motor Show, Koenigsegg CEO and founder Christian von Koenigsegg surprised his father by naming the brand’s newest offering after him. The all-new Jesko will take the place of the Agera RS as a car suited for both street and track. The Jesko’s carbon-fiber monocoque chassis is slightly longer and taller than the Agera, which provides for a roomier cabin. Styling is clearly Koenigsegg; however, the massive rear spoiler instantly draws the eye. At high speed the Jesko generates more than 2,200 pounds of downforce for excellent grip and handling.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceKoenigsegg Jesko
Powering the Jesko is a redesigned 5.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine that puts out 1,280 horses on standard gasoline, and when fueled by E85 biofuel, power rating jump to an incredible and incredulous 1600 horsepower. Power gets directed through an all-new 9-speed “Light Speed Transmission” that was designed in-house and allows for practically instant gear changes from any gear to any gear. This means it can jump from 7th to 4th for immediate acceleration without going through 6th and 5th. Koenigsegg also announced that there will be a sibling to the Jesko — the Jesko 300. With less downforce and more streamlined aerodynamics, the Jesko 300 is named for the goal of breaking the elusive 300-mph mark. Only 125 Jeskos will be sold, and at the time of the reveal more than 80 had been spoken for.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Aventador SVJ Roadster
Last year the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ coupe completed a lap of the famed Nürburgring-Nordschleife in 6:44.97 minutes, setting the record for a street-legal production car. Now its possible to have that same level of performance in an open-top car: the Aventador SVJ Roadster. “The Aventador SVJ Roadster inherits all the power, performance and ground-breaking aerodynamic technologies of the coupe, but with its own iconic presence and prowess,” said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Automobili Lamborghini Stefano Domenicali. “It is as fundamentally exciting to drive as the Aventador SVJ but with an added exclusivity: the option of the open air.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Aventador SVJ Roadster
Like the coupe, the SVJ Roadster is powered by a normally-aspirated 6.5-liter V12 engine that produces 770 horsepower and 531 lb-ft of torque. With power delivered to all four wheels via a 7-speed automatic gearbox, the SVJ Roadster can reach 62 mph in 2.9 seconds and 124 mph in 8.8 seconds. Top speed exceeds 217 mph — certain to be an unforgettable experience with the top down. The roof is composed of carbon fiber and can be removed via quick-release levers for stowage under the front hood. Only 800 Aventador SVJ Roadsters will be sold with a retail price in the U.S. of $573,966.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Huracan EVO Spyder
The Lamborghini Huracan is already an outstanding performance car, but at this year’s Geneva Motor Show the Italian automaker debuted an even hotter version: the Huracan EVO Spyder. Following the coupe that was introduced earlier this year, the Spyder carries over the advanced aerodynamics and next-generation vehicle dynamics control that were introduced on the hardtop version, adding the luxury of open-top high-speed motoring. The Spyder features an electrohydraulic, lightweight soft-top that opens with the push of a button and fully retracts in 17 seconds. The top can be raised or lowered at speeds up to 31 mph. As the top lowers, two fins deploy behind the seats. Not only do these enhance the overall look of the car, they help reduce air turbulence during high-speed open-air motoring.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Huracan EVO Spyder
Power comes from a naturally-aspirated 5.2-liter V10 engine based on the powerplant found in the high-performance Huracan Performante. The big V10 produces a plentiful 640 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque. This results in thrilling speed specs: 62 mph comes up in 3.1 seconds, 124 mph in 9.3 seconds and top speed is rated at a bit over 200 mph. To make proper use of all that power, the Huracan EVO features the latest version of Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Integrata to control and enhance the overall driving dynamics. The LDVI can affect the rear-wheel steering, 4-wheel torque-vectoring system and enhanced all-wheel-drive system to predict the best driving setup for the current situation. Lamborghini will begin deliveries of the new Huracan EVO Spyder later this spring, at a base retail price of $287,400.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren 720S Spider
Two years ago at the Geneva Motor Show McLaren introduced the all-new 720S. This year the 720S was on display at the show, but without a top. Joining the lineup is the 720S Spider combining ultimate performance with open-air motoring. “The new McLaren 720S Spider offers an unparalleled blend of extreme performance, crafted luxury, driver involvement and daily usability — all with the additional exhilaration of open-air driving whenever required,” said Mike Flewitt, CEO of McLaren Automotive. The retractable carbon fiber roof raises or lowers in 11 seconds. The entire top mechanism only adds 108 pounds, conforming to McLaren’s dedication to lightweight performance vehicles.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren 720S Spider
The 720S Spider’s 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 engine produces 710 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque. Performance figures are on a par with the coupe — the sprint to 60 mph takes 2.8 seconds and 124 mph comes up in a hair under 8 seconds. Top speed is 212 mph; however, with the top open the driver would have to settle for a mere 202 mph. With the same handling and performance as the coupe as well as the all-weather durability of the retractable hardtop, the spider will likely become more favorable than the coupe. Deliveries of the new 720S Spider begin this month with a retail price in the U.S. of $315,000.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren Speedtail
Many would argue that the McLaren F1 was one of the most significant sports cars ever built, breaking a 10-year-old record in 1998 to become the world’s fastest production car by clocking a maximum speed of 240.14 mph. The British carmaker subsequently created some thrilling sports cars, but nothing could really be considered a proper successor to that iconic F1 until now: enter the McLaren Speedtail. Referred to as a “Hyper-GT,” the Speedtail will be the fastest production McLaren ever, with an expected top speed of 250 mph.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren Speedtail
Full details of the Speedtail’s powertrain have not been released, although we do know that it will be a gas-electric hybrid system that will generate at least 1035 horsepower. In homage to the iconic F1, the new Speedtail possesses some striking similarities. Only 106 F1s were built, so McLaren will be limiting the production of the Speedtail to the same 106 models — all of which have been spoken for. Most noticeable is the seating — when it debuted the F1 was pioneering in many ways, but it stood out for having the driver sitting in the center of the cockpit, flanked by two passenger seats set farther back. This same seat configuration has been carried over to the new Speedtail.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG GT R Roadster
The AMG GT roadster is one of the sexiest cars on the road, and here in Geneva Mercedes-AMG took the wraps off the latest version, the AMG GT R. This new roadster combines the ultimate street and track performance of the top-level AMG GT R with the joy of open-air driving. Like other AMG GT roadsters, the new GT R roadster features a triple-layer fabric soft-top with a lightweight structure made of aluminum, magnesium and steel. The AMG GT R Roadster sets itself apart from other AMG GT models with a wider carbon fiber front fender as well as exclusive lightweight 10-spoke 20-inch wheels and yellow brake calipers.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG GT R Roadster
AMG is all about performance and the new GT R Roadster doesn’t disappoint. Under the long hood is an AMG 4.0-liter V8 Biturbo engine producing 577 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. Full throttle will get this open-top car to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds; keeping the accelerator pinned will eventually result in 197 mph of wind through the hair. Handling is also improved over a standard AMG GT thanks to better torsional rigidity as well as specially developed AMG coil-over suspension and active rear-wheel steering. The AMG GT R Roadster will have a limited run — only 750 copies will be sold worldwide.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePiech Mark Zero
Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, Piech Automotive was founded three years ago to develop a new flexible vehicle architecture. The company’s first vehicle — the Mark Zero — made its worldwide debut at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Showcasing that this new flexible and modular vehicle platform can be used for multiple drive systems, the Mark Zero is a pure electric sports car. Rather than storing the batteries under the floor, the Mark Zero has them in the center over the rear axle for better weight distribution; this also allows the seats to be positioned lower as in a proper sports car.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePiech Mark Zero
The Mark Zero is equipped with a 150 kW motor on the front axle and two additional 150 kW motors on the rear axle, which translates to around 600 horsepower. Thanks to the instant torque associated with electric motors, the Mark Zero is expected to reach 60 mph in about 3.2 seconds with a top speed of 155 mph. Piech claims that the innovative battery pack can reach 80 percent capacity in four hours and forty minutes, which would be an impressive feat. Head of engineering Klaus Schmidt says that the batteries will be long lasting and have a fast recuperation rate, making it possible for “consecutive fast laps on the Nürburgring with the Piech Mark Zero.” This translates to an expected range of about 310 miles. The company also has plans to produce a four-seater and a sporty SUV.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePininfarina Battista
The Pininfarina name has adorned some of the most beautiful cars ever built, but rather than being the design house for another car company, this time Pininfarina is building their own car. Named for Battista ‘Pinin’ Farina, who founded the Carrozzeria Pininfarina coachbuilding company in 1930, the new Battista is an all-electric hyper GT car with a stunning carbon fiber body and carbon fiber monocoque chassis. Although the design is completely Pininfarina, the fully-electric powertrain comes from the Rimac.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePininfarina Battista
The Battista gets four electric motors — one at each wheel — for a combined output of 1900 horsepower and almost 1700 lb-ft of torque. This results in astounding acceleration — 62 mph is achieved in 1.9 seconds. With a 120 kWh Lithium-Ion battery pack, the Battista can travel about 280 miles on a single charge. Deliveries of the Pininfarina Battista will start in 2020 with only 150 expected to be made available. When it arrives, the Pininfarina Battista will be the most powerful street-legal car to ever be designed and built in Italy.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet
Once the new Porsche 911 Carrera S was introduced last fall in Los Angeles, it was only a matter of time before additional variants began arriving. Here in Geneva the next version of the new 911 made its debut — the 911 Carrera S (and 4S) Cabriolet. Sporting the same updated styling as the coupe, the Cabriolet gets an automatic fabric top that features a solid glass window and an integrated magnesium support structure. The top can open or closed in 12 seconds at speeds up to 31 mph. An electric wind deflector keeps the air smooth in the cabin during top-down cruising.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet
As with the coupe, the Carrera S Cabriolet is powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged flat-six engine producing 443 horsepower and 290 lb-ft of torque. Not only is this updated engine more powerful than the outgoing model, it produces fewer emissions while achieving better fuel economy. All 911 Carrera S and 4S variants are equipped with a new 8-speed PDK dual-clutch gearbox — a manual transmission is no longer offered. The 2020 Porsche 911 Cabriolet is expected to arrive in U.S. showrooms in late summer of this year. Pricing is set at $126,100 for the Carrera S, while the Carrera 4S will be priced at $133,400.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceRimac C Two
One of the most extreme cars of the Geneva Motor Show — which is a high rung to reach — is the Rimac C Two. The second model from Croatia-based Rimac, the C Two is billed as the most powerful electric hypercar in the world. The C Two is powered by four electric motors — one at each wheel — for a combined output of 1914 horsepower. Almost 1700 lb-ft of torque is generated instantly for acceleration that would leave any other car in its dust. The sprint to 60 mph takes 1.85 seconds and it passes 186 mph in 11.8 seconds. Top speed is listed as 256 mph, and Rimac claims the C Two will have a range of 550 km (about 342 miles) with its 120 kWh battery capacity.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceRimac C Two
The C Two was designed and engineered in house by Rimac and features one of the world’s largest single-piece carbon-fiber monocoques. The batteries and powertrain are integrated into the monocoque for greater torsional stiffness. Double wishbone suspension with electronically-controlled dampers provides a smooth and comfortable ride, while the electric motors at each wheel work together for impressive dynamic control. The C Two is expected to go into production for 2020. Only 150 will be built, but it will be certified for sale globally — including in the U.S.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceZenvo TSR-S
If exclusivity and extreme performance are required, the Zenvo TSR-S may be the perfect solution. This Danish car company plans to build only five Zenvo cars annually, so the odds of seeing another (or even one) on the road are rather slim. “Like all our cars, the Zenvo TSR-S is 100 percent Danish-designed and hand-built in an extremely limited number,” said Zenovo Marketing Director Peter van Rooy. “Each car is fully customizable and built to order, tailored to the precise specifications of the discerning client,” van Rooy noted.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceZenvo TSR-S
This sleek exotic is powered by a twin-supercharged 5.8-liter V8 engine that produces 1177 horsepower and 811 lb-ft of torque. The run to 62 mph comes up in 2.8 seconds, and twice that speed in 6.8 seconds. One of the craziest features on the TSR-S is the Zentripetal Wing. This rear spoiler has two rotational axes which allow it to act as an air brake or cornering stabilizer. When the TSR-S corners, the wing rotates relative to the car’s longitudinal axis. This theoretically generates an inward force together with conventional downforce, boosting inner tire grip and cornering stability.

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