Despite the recession, the Frankfurt Motor Show saw new Supercars from Maserati, Lamborghini and Ferrari launched.
Yes, the world’s in financial turmoil. No one seems to have any money, and if they have they’re not spending it. So this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show was pretty ‘Green’ in focus. Lots of headlines about electric boxes and eco-coupes and hybrid cars and the F-Cell future. But what about the staple fodder of Motor Shows – Italian Supercars?
Fotunately for those of us who love cars, the Italians would prefer to ignore whats going on in the world and instead concetrate on bringing four wheeled gourgousness to the car world. And we had new cars from the big three Italian Supercar makers – Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati.
Lamborghini brought us the most extreme – the very limited edition Reventon Roadster. Likely to be made in a run of only fifteen cars, the Reventon Roadster follows the ‘Stealth Fighter’ format of the Reventon Coupe with lots of angles on the bodywork and a trick dashboard. And even though we all know its a cynical marketing ploy to empty the pockets of those with more money than sense, it’s still a spectacular car. And so much more impressive in the flesh than in pictures – even more so than the Reventon Coupe.
Ferrari brought us the first new mid-engined Ferrari in half a generation – the 458 Italia. A stunning looking creation with plenty of new toys and huge performance from its all new 4.5 litre engine and seven speed dual clutch box – conspiring to deliver 127bhp per litre. We’d had lots of information on the 458 trickled to us for months, but in the flesh it does look good. Very good. In fact, it’s the best looking mid-engined Ferrari since the 355.
Maserati brought us the classiest of the bunch – the Maserati GranCabrio. They’ve chopped the top of the elegant GranTurismo and replaced it with a folding rag-top. The result is what Maserati are calling the longest wheelbase convertible on the market. It comes with the GrandTurismo S 4.7 liter V8 which will endow it with adequate – if not scintillating performance – through the paddle-shift auto box.
And I suppose, if we’re talking Italian Supercars, we ought to at least pass a nod at the cracking little ‘City Supercar’ produced by Fiat’s performance division – the Abarth 695 Tributo Ferrari. Probably the most useable of Supercars – at least in town.
So the car world hasn’t gone completely ‘Green’. Thankfully.