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The News from Frankfurt

The News from Frankfurt

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It has been a busy week already at the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung in Frankfort Germany. In addition to Audi’s stunning Nanuk concept and Jaguar’s CX17 reveal already featured on this blog, there have been major announcements from dozens of manufacturers including Tesla, BMW, Infiniti, Lexus, Mercedes and Porsche among others.

BMW revealed its highly anticipated i8 plug-in hybrid sports coupe. This 2+2 seater is based on BMW’s new LifeDrive architecture that debuted in the i3 and features and aluminum frame and carbon fiber reinforced passenger cell. Available in the spring of 2014 for $135,925, the i8 sports a 3-cylinder 1.5 liter gas engine that produces 231 horsepower. Its electric motor generates 131 horsepower and can run up to 22 miles in all-electric mode. We’ll have more complete post on the i8 in a few days.

Mercedes Benz shared its S-Class Coupé concept, giving a glimpse of the next generation S-Class to the world. Daimler Design VP, Gorden Wagener said “The Concept S-Class Coupé combines tradition and emotion, and is a symbol for the embodiment of our design style of sensual clarity. The self-assured style and the highly exclusive appointments make the coupé a true design icon and an expression of modern luxury.“

Lexus continues to expand its new design language across platforms with the LF-NX Crossover Hybrid Concept. A study in angular design, it boldly presents another version of the Lexus spindle grille that was introduced earlier this year as well as an innovative lighting cluster with diamond shaped LED headlamps, daytime running lamps and full-length LED turn signal lamps.

The Porsche 918 Spyder made its global debut at the show in Frankfort, but made its news at the track where it set a new record for street legal cars, lapping the 12.8-mile Nürburgring Nordschleife in less than seven minutes. The 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder will be available in the U.S. in early 2014 for $845,000.

As reported here earlier, Infiniti unveiled its Q30 concept at the show, giving everyone a first look at the new sweeping lines and distinctive design elements that should find themselves into future Infiniti products. The concept also is a platform for Infiniti’s new interior design language they call Dissymmetry. An unconventional approach, Dissymmetry orients design features like air vents, armrests and the instrument clusters for more sculpted appearance. It is definitely different, but we’ll wait for a closer look before passing judgement.

Finally for this edition, Tesla brought the Model S to Frankfurt and announced the sell the S in Europe and create a network of SuperCharger stations across the continent.

We’ll have more from Frankfurt and details about some of these and other major announcements.

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