• Top 10 performance cars at the 2016 Paris Auto Show

    Even though manufacturers like Bentley, Rolls Royce, Lamborghini and Aston Martin were notably absent from this year’s show, there was plenty of good stuff to go around, especially on the Ferrari stand.
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    While the Geneva show remains the show when it comes to performance models, the Paris show – which runs only once every two years – shouldn’t’ be discounted. Even though manufacturers like Bentley, Rolls Royce, Lamborghini and Aston Martin were notably absent from this year’s show, there was plenty of good stuff to go around, especially on the Ferrari stand.

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    GLM G4

    Never heard of GLM? Well, neither had we. All you have to know is they are a Japanese company specializing in EV engineering. For the G4 super car, they’ve paired up with a design studio in Holland and came up with a hybrid supercar good for about 740 lb-ft of torque and 550 hp, which should be enough to get the wild-looking G4 to 100 km/h in just over 3.5 seconds. EPA testing has not been completed, but GLMs’s claiming a range of 400 km.
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    Toyota Yaris WRC

    And now for something completely different. Leave it to Toyota to take one of the world’s least-exciting cars in the econobox extraordinaire Yaris and turn it into something that will actually turn heads instead of force yawns. The Yaris WRC will be competing in the world’s topmost rallying circuit, facing off against the likes of VW, Ford and Citroen. While they aren’t yet revealing specs, the fact it’s competing at this level means AWD, and turbo power in the neighbourhood of 300 hp. It will be interesting to see if Toyota’s Gazoo Racing crew will be able to re-ignite the WRC flame for Toyota, who hasn’t competed at this level since they campaigned a Corolla driven by Carlos Sainz in 1999.
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    Acura NSX

    This is nothing new, necessarily, but wherever the new NSX goes, it tends to turn heads and that includes here at the Paris Auto Show surrounded by stuff like the Aperta and GT R. The latter is closer in spec to the NSX, and you can imagine there being plenty of arguments regarding the best performance answer: the NSX’s newfangled hybrid tech, or the AMG’s classic big motor brutality?
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    2017 Porsche Panamera S E Hyrbrid

    This is no surprise, really; when Porsche revealed it would be building a new Panamera, you knew the hybrid model wasn’t far behind. The Paris show marks its debut, and it makes use of a twin-turbo V6 engine as well as a 136 hp electric motor and 14.1 kWh battery. Porsche claims it’s able to cruise 50 km on e-power alone, at which point it takes about 6 hours to re-charge. Many of the styling cues started with the previous-gen Panamera hybrid remain, including green brake calipers and matching green badging.
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    BMW M4 GTS

    While not quite as hardcore as the GT R, the M4 GTS is a mighty fine take on what is already a mighty fine car. So fine, in fact, that BMW kept their baby way up on a pedestal at the show, so us journalists couldn’t get our greasy paws on it. To get the M4 a “GTS” designation, BMW added an adjustable rear wing, adjustable front splitter and sparkly new wheels. Under the hood, a series of tweaks and twists has freed up an additional 68 hp over the M4, for a total of 493.
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    Mercedes-AMG GT R

    While we’re on the subject of Mercedes: the big news concerning the AMG GT recently is the arrival of a drop top version, I would hesitate to say that this race car for the road version – in all its lime green glory – is the real head-turner. 577 hp means it gets an additional 74 hp over the GT S, while all manner of weight saving deletions and aerodynamic additions mean that this will have what it takes to compete with the best of the best in the grand touring world.
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    Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6

    Forget the long and convoluted name for a second, and focus on this car’s beautiful, long hood instead. It takes up about half of the car’s overall length, and is enough to give this particular concept as much presence as anything at the show, including the LaFerrari Aperta. The wheels? 24 inches. Power? Four electric motors. Speed? Somewhere around 250 km/h. This is not for the faint of heart and if they ever do build it, well, better get those lottery ticket numbers ready.
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    Ferrari 70th Anniversary specials

    As we said – there was lots going on at the Ferrari stand this year, the brand obviously taking advantage of so much of its competition not being at the show. 2017 marks the 70th year of Ferrari’s existence, and to celebrate, Ferrari has plans for a whole whack of celebratory events throughout the year. For the purposes of the show, however, it’s all about the special edition cars they’re doing. These editions consist mainly of paintjobs on existing models like the California T and F12 Berlinetta, but it’s the inspiration for the paintjobs that matters. They are all representations of popular Ferrari race cars and personalities over the years; the Stirling, for example, is a modern take on the colours worn by the 250 SWB of Sir Stirling Moss during his wins at the Tourist Trophy and other events. The McQueen, meanwhile, channels the 250 GT California Spyder Steve McQueen used to own, and which was eventually bought by former Top Gear presenter Chris Evans for a cool 6 million pounds.
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    Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta

    Ahh, now that’s more like it. If you like your Ferraris to have a “performance above all else” attitude, then the Aperta will likely float your boat more than the GTC4 (though if you have one of these, you’ve probably got a GTC4, too). It’s mechanically identical to the coupe – 950 hp, sub three-second 0-100 km/h time – and manages to maintain the same chassis rigidity. Plus, just look at it; there will be all sorts of colour combos to choose from, but the show car’s black and red ‘do is a winner.
  • Ferrari GTC4 Lusso T

    While perhaps not the most exciting Ferrari at the show, the Lusso T is notable for being the first V8-powered, turbocharged four-seater from the brand. It also manages to look better than the FF, 612 and 456 that preceded it, thanks to styling that is at once subtle, and at once edgy and reminiscent of the other cars in the line-up. The shooting-brake profile is also a sight for sore eyes.

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