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It’s hard to be neutral about Switzerland’s home motor show

Currently the motoring world has gone crazy for the many weird and wonderful exhibits on display at the Geneva Motor Show.

Geneva 2013 has been particularly interesting for showcasing hypercar exotica.  We were certainly taken by the new Ferrari LaFerrari.  Its name aside (presumably translating as the ‘Ferrari The Ferrari’), it looks suitably extreme and purposeful.  GForces staff comments ranged from, “I’d sell limbs to own one of those,” to “Not sure about the wing mirrors” – but the general feeling was one of awe.

Ferrari’s great Italian rival, Lamborghini fought for a share of the LaFerrari’s limelight.  Its Veneno concept comes complete with a monster 750bhp V12 and looks which make Blade Runner’s vision of the future seem like a documentary about a village fete.  The name ‘Veneno’ is derived from a fighting bull (in Lamborghini tradition) which won its contest against a matador in 1914.  Though the car might not be a killing machine, certainly the performance could leave a few other supercars for dead in a sprint.

The British were not to be left behind either.  We filmed the McLaren MP4-12C recently for Jardine Motors Group, and McLaren’s next move – the P1 – is a technological masterclass.   It has 150bhp more than an F1 car, a KERS system just like an F1 car, and aerodynamics derived from, you guessed it, an F1 car.  There was a lot of appreciation for the P1 at GForces.  It’s ‘push-to-pass’ button, unleashing 179bhp worth of KERS in addition to the V8 engine’s 737bhp, certainly got some tongues wagging.  The general feeling was that push-to-pass would be useful in those situations where 737bhp just isn’t enough.

Some of the more attainable cars on display at Geneva caught our eyes too.  For instance, the Kia Pro_cee’d GT raised some eyebrows with its enticing looks and hot-hatch performance.  Volkswagen’s hot-hatch stalwart, the Golf GTI, has also been renewed, receiving a good reception here, and for those who find the Golf a little ordinary there was the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG – a model based on the brand’s new A-Class which raises the bar of hot hatchery.

Less likely in the list of our Geneva-related discussion points was the Dacia Logan estate – a back-to-basics car which offers affordable and practical driving.  With a base price of less than £8,000 it’s a perfect workhorse and a nice solution for a family struggling to afford a new car from the more established brands.  Our appreciation for the Logan highlights that, as much as we like the expensive and exotic end of the spectrum, there’s always a place at GForces for things that do exactly what they say on the tin.

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