Wednesday 6th March 2013


GENEVA MOTOR SHOW 2013: SUPERCARS & TUNERS

The weird, the wonderful and the extreme from the Geneva show floor


Of all the annual shows Geneva is one of the better ones for a glimpse on life on the wild side of the motor industry, with plenty of out-there madness from the tuners, niche brands and dreamers. All of which makes for a pleasant diversion from the hard-nosed business over on the mainstream corporate stands.

Where to start?
Where to start?
And if ever you needed evidence that money doesn’t buy you taste a quick glimpse of some of the tuner cars will back that assertion right up. Metallic pink Range Rovers with side scoops and bonnet vents? If your money’s good it’s yours.

Regular perps on the rap sheet of crimes against good taste include Mansory, its ‘Stallone’ Ferrari F12 almost beyond parody were it not for the red’n’carbon Bentley beside it. Mansory’s entry into the ‘most tasteless G-Wagen’ contest is a pretty strong effort too, the bright yellow Speranza likened to one wag to a juiced up Suzuki Jiminy. Hamann’s double DRL’d black’n’gold G is pretty obscene too but nothing compared with the aforementioned pink Range Rover.

AMG G not pokey enough? This should do...
AMG G not pokey enough? This should do...
Credit to Brabus though. Its V12 800 Widestar G-Wagen is, by some margin, the winner in this most niche of sub niches, the engorged G saving its true outrageousness for the mechanical spec which liberates the ‘power reserves inherent in the 6.0-litre V12 Biturbo engine’ to unleash, yes, 800hp and 1,047lb ft of torque. To keep things vaguely within the bounds of reason Brabus limits the latter to 811lb ft but it’s still enough to see the G to 62mph in 4.5 seconds. Without the 155mph limiter Brabus says it would do 168mph, which sounds utterly terrifying. Also on the Brabus stand is a rather more tasteful and menacingly black CLS Shooting Brake. With 730hp.

At the more tasteful end of the tuning spectrum Ruf’s 991-based RT35 S is a very slick piece of kit, 650hp from its twin-turbo engine and the trademark integrated roll cage now 20hp up on before and available with a dual-clutch transmission. The 997 911 Turbo-based RT12 R still beats it with 750hp and looks gorgeous while an exploded view of the mad V8-powered RGT-8 is just fascinating.

Exploded stuff - always fascinating
Exploded stuff - always fascinating
Upstairs you get a slightly different flavour, thanks to the prevalence of design studies from studios like Pininfarina, Carrozzeri Touring and Italdesign. The former’s Sergio concept (named after the great man himself) is trumped in the beauty stakes only by the 1965 Dino Berlinetta Speciale concept beside it while the Touring Disco Volante oozes class and style. Whether you’d chop up an 8C to have one is another matter though.

The nearby Spyker B6 Venator concept is interesting too, this 375hp-plus transverse V6-engined study previewing a new production model due next year and aiming for a relatively affordable pricetag of around £100,000 or so.

Touring Disco Volante
Touring Disco Volante
Brabus CLS
Brabus CLS
Hamann G-Class
Hamann G-Class
Spyker B6 Venator
Spyker B6 Venator
Mansory F12 & G-Wagen
Mansory F12 & G-Wagen
Techart Panamera
Techart Panamera
Author: Dan Trent
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