Not everything at Geneva this year was either a supercar or SUV-shaped…there were as well some enticing things in small packages. Here’s our selection:
Making its European motor show debut, the M2 is the littlest, least expensive of all BMW’s M cars – and uses its compactness for great agility, recalling the handling prowess of the first M3 in the 1980s. We were certainly taken by the car on show, complete with racing stripes. With 370hp and 0-62 in 4.5secs, the M2 is available now, priced from £44,070.
Smart fortwo Brabus Cabrio.
Hottest, smallest and most exclusive ragtop in Geneva? Has to be this, making its world debut at the show. With a Brabus reworking, the open-topped two-seater has 90hp, sports equipment, gets to 62mph in 11.7secs and costs the equivalent of £23,000. Oh, and there will only be 200 of them, encouraging Smart to call it a ‘collector’s edition’. Maybe, but you will have to buy yours on the continent: Brabus is only a trim level in the UK and there are no plans to sell this model here – a shame given how much fun Brabus versions of Smarts have been in the past.
Abarth 124 Spider.
124 is one of the most distinguished numbers in small-car history, and although this Abarth model’s lineage is a little convoluted (Mazda by way of Fiat) we reckon it works – especially the black bonnet look. A high performance version of the Fiat 124 Spider that’s also on sale in the UK this year, the Abarth should go and sound with real sporting intent: a tweaked turbo engine boasts 170hp for 0-62 in under 7secs and there’s a loud exhaust too. Too tame? Try the fixed-roof, many-spotlighted rally version that recalls great rally Abarths of the past.
In 190hp all-wheel-drive form and boasting typical Audi finish and technology (including the option of the brilliant virtual dashboard display) the new Q2 promises to be an appealing and accomplished pocket rocket – it’s not much longer than a Fiesta. The Q2’s significance goes far beyond this in fact, the car corralling lots of added functionality and connectivity inside a new, more geometric design aimed at appealing to a younger new breed of Audi buyer. Little on the outside, it’s definitely a big car for Audi. UK deliveries from November, prices to be confirmed soon.
A battery-powered three-wheeler – it’s the sort of car that’s obvious only to a firm like Morgan. Quirky? With its exposed brass cooling fins and asymmetrical cyclops headlight, certainly. But according to Morgan MD Steve Morris it’s also exhilarating fun, as well as a statement of both British hand craftsmanship and zero emissions efficiency. Designed by Morgan’s John Wells, EV3 is completely different from regular Three-wheelers in its design – said to mimic 1930s aero-engined racers – and with carbon body parts will cost more, up to £40,000. Range 150 miles, 9 seconds 0-62, 90mph flat-out and available towards the end of the year.
Images courtesy of Newspress and Bob Murray