• Top 10 debuts at the 2016 Paris Auto Show

    Spanning 6.5 halls, the Mondial de L’Automobile, as it’s known, sure does cover a lot of ground in the physical sense.
    • BMw X2 concept
    Dan Heyman

    When a show only runs once every two years – as this one does – you can expect that its scope changes dramatically. Spanning 6.5 halls, the Mondial de L’Automobile, as it’s known, sure does cover a lot of ground in the physical sense. As you’ll see from the following highlights, it covers a lot of industry ground, too.

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    • land rover discovery

    Land Rover Discovery

    While the Discovery has gone through four generations since its debut in 1989, never has it undergone a transformation quite like this. Gone is the upright windscreen, the squared-off edges and dual-opening tailgate. It’s all been replaced by a sleeker, more dynamic shape that looks a little more mainstream. Will that be a problem for Landie purists? Perhaps, but if the goal was to attract new buyers to the brand, then this was the way to go about it. The younger, more eco-friendly buyers will also likely respect the engine choice; the supercharged V6 returns from last year’s LH4, and two diesels are offered, one of which will arrive in North America.
    • Volkswagen I.D Paris Auto show

    Volkswagen I.D.

    Well, they really had no choice, did they? After a year fraught with scandal, Germany’s largest automaker needed to start re-building some green bridges. With that in mind, they revealed the I.D, a full-electric car destined for production by 2020. To show just how serious they are, VW has already revealed that there will be two levels; a 300 km range car, and one with a larger battery pack good for 500-600 km. Oh, and those blue lights you see at each corner of the roof? Those are sensors, because VW is claiming that there will be a fully-autonomous version by 2025.
    • Volkswagen golf-e

    Updated Volkswagen e-Golf

    Just in case people weren’t going to jive with the ultra long-term plans involving the I.D., VW also revealed a new version of the Golf E to satiate those wanting a more immediate arrival of something green. It gets a new battery pack that’s now good for around 300 km, and while citizens of only 10 U.S. states had the chance at getting their hands on one previously, don’t be surprised if this new, longer-range model will arrive in Canada, too.
    • nissan micra

    Nissan Micra

    While we in Canada are going to have to wait a little longer for Nissan’s newest take on its popular microcar – Europe will start getting them six months from now – it nevertheless deserves a spot here. It’s great-looking and while some may claim the fact that it’s actually a little larger than the old car which takes away from the effect a bit, there’s no denying that the myriad customization options and the application of Nissan’s trademark “V” front-end provide an altogether more modern, sleeker look to the proceedings. The availability of a turbo engine, meanwhile, means that the Micra will now get the power boost it needs.
    • hyundai rn30 paris auto show

    Hyundai RN30 Concept

    Well, for starters, just look at it. All flared-arches and big wings, the RN30 is a Hyundai hatch unlike anything we’ve seen before. The racy interior with orange accents is another level. It’s based on the new i30 (likely “Elantra GT” in our markets sometime soon), the RN30 not only looks the part, but it marks the beginning of Hyundai’s new performance-based “N” line. It’s not just eye candy, either; underneath that racy exterior is a 2.0L turbocharged motor good for 274 hp, an electronic limited slip differential and AWD. While the car itself won’t be produced for consumers, expect a lot of that tech to arrive in Hyundai’s N cars.
    • BMW X2

    BMW X2 Concept

    While technically BMW was first to the small crossover game, the arrival of Mercedes’ GLA-Class meant the latter had an entrant to the segment that BMW didn’t; that is to say a compact hatch that had been given stilts and all-wheel drive. The X2 is BMW’s answer, and it certainly looks the part. Plastic cladding around and between the wheels, and space-agey tires that look fit for the lunar rover to their part to add some toughness to the shape, while the deep front splitter and aggressive stance show the car’s more performance-oriented attitude. Oh, and the classic kidney grille has been flipped upside down, to provide a look that’s unique not only among compact crossovers, but among other BMW’s – the X1 and X4, for example – too.
    • toyota c-hr

    Toyota C-HR

    Like BMW, Toyota is actually a little late to the hatchback-y compact crossover segment; indeed, when you have mid- and full-sized crossovers that are perennial bestsellers, the need might not be felt quite so highly. Of course, as people consider to downsize and manufacturers continue to strive for elusive younger buyers, something had to be done. Enter the C-HR – “Coupe High Rider” – a Nissan Juke-sized baby CUV that has the styling to hopefully hit the target. The front-end is purposeful, the proportions are just right and those wheels are something no Toyota crossover has ever been able to match. Underneath all that, a 1.2L turbo or a hybrid powertrain are available, each one appealing to a specific buyer set. Inside, a redesigned infotainment system and body colour-matching inserts do well to compliment the aggressive exterior looks.
    • Lexus

    Lexus UX Concept

    While those crazy baskets for seats, that oddly-spoked steering wheel, moon boot-like tires and spindly wing mirrors likely won’t make production, the arrival of the production version of the Toyota C-HR just one stand over suggests that Lexus is on the same path. The UX is roughly the size of the C-HR, and you know that as Infiniti, BMW and Mercedes continue to build luxury compact-crossovers, Lexus would be foolish to miss the opportunity. The elements that look closer to production possibility work, too; the fenders may not be quite so angular, but you can bet they’ll maintain the rugged plastic-clad finish and the hidden rear door handles are a good bet, too, which would give the UX a coupe-like appearance.
    • Civic Type R

    Honda Civic Type R Concept

    There have been Civic Type Rs before, of course, but we’ve never seen one here. With the transition to a global platform, however, it’s likely we will be getting to experience one of the world’s most sought-after hot hatchbacks this time around. And what a time to do so; this is one of the wildest-looking Type Rs we’ve ever seen. The matte black finish, red brake calipers and carbon-fibre splitter and rocker panels are quite something to behold, but it’s the view from the back that’s most impressive, what with its three massive tailpipes, huge spoiler and touring car-esque underbody diffuser.
  • Ferrari GTC4 Lusso T

    While this isn’t the first time Ferrari’s done a 4-seater, it’s the first time a Prancing Horse people mover has had a V8. The Lusso’s turbo V8 is good for 610 hp and 560 lb-ft of torque, putting it roughly on par with competition in the form of the Aston Martin Rapide and Porsche Panamera Turbo. Inside there’s bucket seats all around and while I doubt many adults will want to be spending too much time back there, the shooting-brake roofline and deep buckets should leave enough room to keep everyone coddled for a short time, anyway. Plus, as the unveiling video suggests, you can give the kids quite the ride, too.