A stopover with a lot of sun and wind in the Eternal City and then went to sleep till Switzerland. The city of watchmakers welcomes you with hard to pronounce ads names, but hang, also hard, at the hand of the experts. In this time of year, Geneva puts the tradition of Audemars Piquet, Hublot, Breitling or IWC watch on the second place and offers notoriety to one of the longest running auto shows around the world.
The onset of spring brings back the fuss at the edge of the chic city, that becomes too small for two weeks. It seems impossible to defeat the endless string of stops aligned column flowing slowly toward the parking pavilion. However, the unwritten policy of a country that did not want to eat at the table of 27 nations, makes possible for everyone to find their way to the parking lot and the press center.
Although this sound familiar, I want to repeat: the hall were they throw together first interviews is a real Babylon. Brazilians, Germans, noisy Russians, British and apathetic French depict a paint emerged from Dali’s imagination. Conglomerate ethnic flock to throw their clothes or to raise their media catalogs. Then, torrent spread among dozens of stands, thrown into the controlled chaos of a huge hall.
Like last year’s Geneva Motor Show keeps an air of chic that Frankfurt and Paris can’t reach because they prove to be either too conservative or too disorganized. The atmosphere at the show is as always: busy. A lot of people swarming around the premiere, which in turn gets rid of the white sheet. View either a whisk relentless trembling constantly looking for every wisp of dust, see either a cloth, which tries to hide the traces of laymen hands.
At the Mercedes stand, for example, the new CLS 63 AMG has acted as a magnet on a boy with a tuft, which was not tired enough to “drink” every particle of dust. The same thing at the Porsche stand where Panamera S Hybrid who let himself caressed by a girl armed with a cloth. At the Skoda stand but the obsession with perfection has been moved very much by a zealous boy, who decided to wipe the stairs, of a pure white.
On the manufacturers stand there have been all kinds of people: from school children, elderly, from curious Chinese, to the star journalists (Autocar, Evo, AutoExpress), from people in suits, perched on scooters, the persons with disabilities in wheelchairs. There are no missing persons, people with weight in the industry are present at their stands. There was room for everyone under the dome of the pavilion.
There was mounts of plasmas walls, which have attracted a lot of gape. A Chinese remained downright floored by the many options offered by Connected Drive. Others have chosen to play with their hands on friendly touchscreens, which bombarded with information and useful graphics. Asians did not miss from the Mercedes stand, where they lingered minutes aboard the new CLS series to capture the center console till exhaustion.
There is no auto show without female presence – no exception. This time, however, Geneva 2011 has been poorer than in other years. Budgets may not have been so generous or maybe some girls were already out in retirement. The fact is that some of the girls have been requested so much that they closed one eye at the pictures and forgot to always smile. The biggest excitement was the Lancia stand, the Italians managed to bring this year the hottest girls.
Let’s not forget to talk about cars. Volkswagen Group had a booth generous as always, but everything was too dull and too sober to make the public swarm. The tuners have attracted many flashes, even if some works have exceeded the rules of common sense and exaggerated with bumpers and ailerons. Invader is an example of mother-forest, ready to scare naughty children, even in pictures.
At the opposite pole, one of the most beautiful appearance was undoubtedly Pagani Huayra. Horacio Pagani‘s supercar left with mouth open most of the audience and eclipsed the most sumptuous supercars launches as Lamborghini Aventador or Gumpert Tornante. Unusual occurrences and Sbarro stand, where we met with a mixed sporting model with a Lamborghini face and the rear of a KTM X-Bow. A strong visual impact had the orange Lexus LF-A Nurburgring Edition.
The Grand Finale: Here are all the 706 cars presented at 81ͤ Salon International de L’Auto et Accessoires Genève 2011 in a picture courtesy carbuzz.co.uk (or take a look at the 6748×7380 original image).Geneva Motor Show 2011 Live video: