Auto shows are great for checking out some exotic eye candy. Strolling around a showroom floor, visitors can gawk at the latest Lamborghini, Maserati or Bentley and get lost in their automotive fantasies.
For most of us, that’s the closest we’ll get to some of these cars. And that’s just fine. Who needs weekly speeding tickets on the way to work anyway? Lost in the spotlight are the rides you actually want for your commute.
Today, we’re looking at those cars, the luxury vehicles that might actually be within your reach. At the Frankfurt Motor Show last week, we saw some terrific luxury cars that fall into that category. Some of them are still concepts and may not end up being produced, but we wish they were.
We hope we’ll all be seeing these cars at a dealership sometime soon.
If you’re familiar with BMW’s X1 crossover, consider this its chief competitor. The X1 is a really, really small SUV and the Q30, a collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Nissan is right there with it.
Unveiled in Frankfurt, the Infiniti Q30 is not a crossover at all, according to Nissan, but a combination of a coupe, hatchback and crossover. It’s designed, the company says, to compete for an increasingly urban customer.
This is a concept, but one that is likely to be produced. You could see this car in an Infiniti showroom in the U.S. perhaps as early as 2015.
This one is no concept, but a well-done refresh on one of the better luxury sedans already on the market.
The Audi A8 sedan comes with its adaptive cruise control system and active lane assist, along with a park assist function that handles steering while parking. Audi will offer the A8 in a variety of engine configurations, the most powerful of which is a twin-turbo V8 that delivers 435 horsepower.
The brand hasn’t said which options will be available in the U.S. yet, but the car goes on sale in Europe this November. We can hope that North America isn’t far behind.
One of the last holdouts has folded. Jaguar stayed out of the small SUV segment for a long time. With the ceiling of the fast-growing segment climbing higher by the day, the British automaker is finally in the game with the C-X17.
What a way to join the crowd. Designers found a way to make the C-X17 look exactly like a Jag. The vehicle has “been created as a design study to introduce Jaguar’s all-new advanced aluminum unibody architecture,” the company says in a written statement, “on which an exciting range of future Jaguar vehicles will be built.”
We hope the C-X17 is first in line.
Joining the Q30 in the concept-yet-really-close-to-production category is the latest from Lexus. The LF-NX is positioned, like the Q30, to chase those rich urban dwellers who need a small car for city driving and parking.
What we like about this concept most might just be that it’s a needed departure from the brand's sleepy, understated design.
Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe
The latest in luxury design meets the latest in technology. This S-Class concept contains the German brand’s “Intelligent Drive” safety system that can create a three-dimensional image of what lies in the road ahead of a vehicle for up to 160 feet.
Its interior is comprised of “supple calfskin,” according to Mercedes-Benz, and silk carpet. Under the hood, the V8 bi-turbo engine produces 449 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque.
Volvo V60 Coupe Concept
For at least a decade, Volvo’s car designs have been comfortable, reliable and safe. The V60 concept shown in Frankfurt boldly moves into a new direction, while simultaneously paying tribute to the classic P1800 model of Volvo’s long-ago past.
Better yet: This Volvo is a hybrid, powered by a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine in the front and electric motor that powers the rear. Together, the two combine for 400 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque.