The Petrolhead Corner

The “Off-Geneva” Edition… Because There Were Still Some Insanely Cool Cars to Admire

Geneva Motorshow cancelled... Yes, but still some pretty important launches.

calendar | ic_dehaze_black_24px By Brice Goulard | ic_query_builder_black_24px 5 min read |

Like many other events and shows, the 2020 edition of GIMS, Geneva International Motorshow, was cancelled because of the Coronavirus situation. Did it mean that there were no new cars to dream about…? That would be way too sad and we could use a bit of joy and passion these days – now more than ever. Even though GIMS 2020 didn’t happen, car manufacturers had one or two cool things up their sleeves – to say the least. In fact, this “off-Geneva” edition was packed with real “bad-ass” (pardon my French) new dream cars. And today the Petrolhead Corner goes around the web and shows you some of these beauties.

The (Insane, really…) Koenigsegg Gemera

I’m going to forget everything I’ve been told about writing with objectivity in mind. This new Koenigsegg is simply, at least in my eyes, one of the most impressive, desirable things I’ve seen in a long time. You might not agree and I won’t blame you for that… But really, I’m in love. Anyway, let’s get back to the car itself.

What is the Gemera? In short, a mid-engined, plug-in hybrid two-door four-seater… Sound like an unusual combination, and it is. Koenigsegg doesn’t need to create cars within the classic boundaries. The brand calls it its “everyday” car, thanks to its larger cabin, a design that is less aggressive than its hypercars and settings that can make it usable for daily drives. Well, this certainly is a very unique vision of an everyday car. What’s undeniable is the beauty of this car, its sleek profile, its great proportions. It has all the elements of a true GT car, mixed with Koenigsegg’s DNA.

Powering this insane machine is a combination of four engines, producing a total of 1,700hp. Two of the electric motors are situated on the rear axle and power each of the rear wheels. Together these motors produce an equivalent power figure of 1100bhp, while the third, smaller electric motor is mounted within the crankcase of the bespoke internal combustion engine. The most impressive part is the internal combustion engine itself, named TFG (Tiny Friendly Giant…) This 2-litre, three-cylinder twin-turbocharged petrol unit produces 600hp. And this results in a car that can transport an entire family, with luggage, to 62mph in 1.9sec and at a top speed of close to 250mph. One sure way to make sure the kids arrive early to school.

Is this justified, reasonable or useful? Certainly not, but this is why hypercars exist. More details on the Koenigsegg Gemera at www.evo.co.uk.

The off-road 911 – RUF Rodeo Concept

Even though Porsche today is more or less only track-focused, the brand isn’t a stranger to off-road. And we’re not talking Cayenne here, but rallying. Porsche has won the Monte Carlo rally three times. In 1986, Porsche became the second manufacturer to conquer the formidable Paris-Dakar Rally more than once. Knowing that, the new trend in Porsche custom work is to give your 911 a “Safari” look (and our founder Frank, a well-known Porsche fan, could explain to you why it is so cool).

So, when you take a German producer of bespoke 911-inspired cars and give them the freedom to create an off-road version of the legendary 911, the result is pretty impressive… and very, very cool. Named Rodeo Concept, it would be reductive to call it “just a transformed 911” because it is more complex than just a transformation. It might have the look of a 911 and relies on RUF’s own carbon monocoque used in the CTR and SCR, contemporary homages to the original ‘Yellow bird’. And inside… the option of a naturally aspirated flat-six with 510hp, or a twin-turbo flat-six producing 700hp.

The wow-effect? The two-tone olive green and golden sand paintwork, the additional headlights, the luggage wrack, the fat off-road tyres and the bull bar in front. Not sure this will be to everyone’s taste, but it works for Frank and me.

More details about the RUF Rodeo at petrolicious.com here.

Made for the Track – McLaren 765LT

I can remember the first time I saw and heard a modern McLaren MP4-12C in the metal… My first reaction, while it was standing next to a Ferrari 458 Italia, was mild, very mild indeed. The car looked and sounded a bit dull, made by engineers but lacking passion. This was eight years ago and since then things have changed drastically at McLaren. Proof? The new 765LT. That isn’t dull – at all.

Based on the already ultra-sharp 720s, McLaren offers a track-focused version of its super-series. The recipe that has been so effective in the past is simple: less weight, more power, better aerodynamics, more grip, less comfort. This certainly won’t make a pleasant drive around town, but if it surpasses the older 675LT – which it will, no doubt – it will be one ultra-sharp car on fast roads and track. And then there’s the styling. Again, not the most elegant of the lot, but with a clear sense of drama.

More details about McLaren’s latest track-focused car, here at drivetribe.com. And as they say, it “will most likely blow your socks off”.

The new Turbo – 2020 Porsche 911 Turbo S

There isn’t one 911… There are multiple 911s. You have the classic, you have the top-of-the-range, track-focused GT3s (inspired by the old RS) and you have one that is a model on its own, the Turbo. Certainly, the modern Turbo hasn’t much in common with the early 3-litre version, the so-called “widow-maker” from 1975, with its 4-speed gearbox and its unpredictable power delivery. The concept has changed to become probably the fastest way to travel from A to B in something fast, reliable and relatively comfortable.

The launch of a new 911 Turbo is always an event for Porsche fans, and the brand was supposed to present its latest iteration, based on the 992, at Geneva. And while not able to do so, the brand still launched it. And it doesn’t disappoint. More capable, more powerful, more comfortable, easier to drive than ever: it is Porsche’s take on the GT car. A Ferrari F8 Tributo might be more exciting, a Bentley Continental more comfortable… But the 911 Turbo might the best compromise on the market today.

More details about this new 2020 Porsche 992 Turbo, here at evo.co.uk.

1 response

  1. Interesting take on things, my choice would be the Porsche except that it doesn’t appear to have a towbar fitted!

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