Frankfurt Motor Show 2017 - preview
The run-up to the International Automobile-Ausstellung (or, as it's better known, the Frankfurt Motor Show) has begun, and we'll begin to see all the latest new car and concept debuts on the first press day tomorrow.
Held on a two-year rotation with the Paris Motor Show, Frankfurt is one of the most important dates in the motoring calendar and is the location for plenty of important new car launches. We'll see important debuts from manufacturers like Mercedes, BMW, Renault and Suzuki, as well as plenty of Europe's smaller and weirder manufacturers occupying the little stands dotted around the vast show hall.
Here's our pick of the top 10 cars and concept cars we're expecting to see unveiled at the show.
Bentley Continental GT
The latest grand tourer from British manufacturer Bentley is an improvement on the old model in every way. Launched initially with a 6.0-litre W12 engine producing 626bhp, it's being marketed as the sportiest Continental yet.
The new Continental is longer yet lighter than the outgoing car, and rather than flashily displaying its technology it hides items like the sat-nav screen behind a beautifully crafted wooden cover. Classy.
The archetypal super-saloon is back for another generation, this time equipped with four-wheel drive and an amazing 592bhp. It's set to take the fight to cars like the Audi RS6 and Mercedes-AMG E 63 S.
A 0-60mph time of well under four seconds is enough to challenge many supercars, but the M5 remains wrapped up in a practical four-door saloon body allowing it to double as a family bus if needed.
Mercedes-AMG Project One
Mercedes will be producing 275 examples of what it's calling 'an F1 car for the road' – using a Formula-One spec turbocharged V6 engine as part of a 1000bhp hybrid powertrain. We've only seen teaser images so far.
Expect a top speed of 217mph courtesy of that massive power output and a lightweight body comprised mainly of carbon fibre.
The latest in Renault's line of iconic hot hatchbacks, the new Megane RS will be the first hot hatchback with four-wheel steering. A 1.8-litre turbocharged engine will provide the RS with around 300bhp – enough to rival cars like the Volkswagen Golf R and Honda Civic Type R.
It'll come with a choice of automatic or manual gearshifts, and with Renault's past experience, should be incredible to drive.
Suzuki Swift Sport
Suzuki's own entrant to the hot hatchback sector comes in the form of the latest Swift Sport. Previous generations have eschewed massive power outputs for huge amounts of fun – we'd expect the new car to be the same.
Under the bonnet, expect to see Suzuki's brilliant 1.4-litre BoosterJet engine, producing 138bhp. The lightweight body (around 990kg) means performance will be sprightly, and handling should be nimble.
Mini John Cooper Works GP concept
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Mini's Monte Carlo win, the wildly styled JCW GP concept is a track-focused prototype, doused in lashings of carbon fibre and equipped with wild LED lighting.
No details of the powertrain have been announced, though the concept appears to be more of a styling exercise than a realistic attempt at a production car.
Smart Vision EQ ForTwo
Smart is no stranger to funky city cars and its Vision EQ Fortwo is a self-driving electric concept built around ride-sharing and other urban mobility solutions.
The Concept features screens inside and out to communicate with both passengers and pedestrians, advertising the car's destination to facilitate ride-sharing.
Hyundai i30 N
Hyundai's first attempt at a proper hot hatchback certainly looks to be more than just a halfhearted effort.
With a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, power is set to peak at 271bhp, while the entire project has been overseen by former BMW M boss Albert Biermann – so the N division is in good hands.
The Cayenne is the car that turned Porsche into the SUV powerhouse it is today – now the third-generation model will be launched, with a moderately updated look and plush interior inspired by the Panamera.
Unusually, the Cayenne will launch without a diesel engine option – sure to divide opinion in the UK.
Replacing the California T in Ferrari's lineup will be the new Portofino, a grand-touring convertible with nearly 600bhp, a folding hardtop and bags of class.
It takes styling cues from Ferrari's current lineup, including the brand-new 812 Superfast, while the Portofino name comes from a glorious town on the Italian Riviera.