2020 Geneva Motor Show: the cars we would have seen
Geneva 2020 was due to give us many exciting reveals, including new models from Skoda, Toyota and Porsche
The 2020 Geneva Motor Show has been cancelled due to the spread of the coronavirus. A ban introduced by the Swiss Government has prohibited events of over 1,000 people until at least Sunday 15 March, the day the Geneva show was set to finish.
The annual Geneva International Motor Show (GIMS) is one of the biggest events on the motoring calendar. The world’s biggest car manufacturers choose Geneva as the place to showcase their upcoming new model launches and concept cars for the first time.
The Geneva Motor Show is an excellent indicator of not only the new cars you’ll be able to buy in the coming months but also the direction car manufacturers are headed in the longer term. With diesel and petrol cars coming under increasing pressure from emissions legislation, electric and hybrid car development is definitely set to be an overriding theme this year.
Below we’ve pulled together an alphabetical list of all the important cars we were expecting to see at Geneva this year and identified the key new models that will be of most interest to UK car buyers...
Key cars of the 2020 Geneva Motor Show
Fiat 500 EV: Cute 500 supermini gets electric power and a higher priceHyundai i20: Revised supermini will get bolder styling and new technologySkoda Octavia vRS: Latest Octavia vRS will have a hybrid powertrainSEAT Leon: New Leon benefits from hi-tech interior shared with latest GolfMercedes GLA: Mercedes’ smallest SUV is more practical and based on the A-ClassToyota B-SUV: Yaris based small SUV will be all-wheel drive with a petrol/electric powertrain Volkswagen Golf GTI: VW's iconic hot hatch returns with a wealth of new tech and a new design.
Geneva Motor Show 2020: the cars A to Z
Below you'll find the most important cars to be revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in alphabetical order...
Aston Martin Vantage Roadster
The Aston Martin Vantage Roadster was set to make its public debut at Geneva, 70 years after the Vantage name was first used by the British manufacturer. The latest convertible Vantage has the fastest electric roof system on sale. It will rival the McLaren 570S Spider and Porsche 911 Cabriolet, and is priced from £126,950. The convertible uses the same 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 petrol engine as the coupe. The 0-62mph time of 3.8 seconds is only 0.2 seconds slower than the coupe and the Vantage Roadster will go onto a top speed of 190mph.
Audi A3 Sportback
It was thought that the next-generation Audi A3 would be revealed at the GIMS 2020 before hitting showrooms in the last few months of the year. As we’ve come to expect from Audi’s family-size hatchback, styling changes will be minor but it’ll feature wholesale technology updates. A level of self-driving technology previously seen on the Audi A8 will be available for extra cost. Just like the current car, a three-door hatchback model won’t be offered.
BMW i4 Gran Coupe
BMW is expected to reveal its next electric car, the i4 Gran Coupe, in the coming weeks. It’ll have a four-door coupe bodystyle, 523bhp, standard fast charging and a 0-62mph time of around four seconds. It’ll compete directly with the Tesla Model 3 and with 372 miles of range, the i4 has the best range of any EV currently on sale. Level 3 autonomous technology is not legally allowed for use on UK roads but it’s expected the i4 will come with it locked until a later date. BMW has already used carbon fibre in the i3, i8 and 7 Series, so it’s likely to do so again for the i4.
DS 9 Saloon
DS will unveil its all-new DS 9 executive saloon shortly. It will be available as a plug-in hybrid with three different power outputs and as a conventional petrol model, the latter of which is expected to kick off the range for around £32,000. The DS 9 will sit above the DS 3 and DS 7 Crossback SUVs in the range to become the flagship DS model. The car has a 2.9-metre wheelbase (the distance between the front and rear wheels), which should result in plenty of legroom for rear-seat passengers, which is particularly sought-after in China. DS designers have mixed elements from the current DS design language with some of the details from the 1955 Citroen DS, like the high-mounted indicator lights in the C-pillars.
Fiat 500 Electric
It’s thought that Fiat was planning to showcase the new electric 500 model in Geneva. Recent spy shots suggest most of the styling will be the same as the petrol model, although it should get a fared-in grille to improve efficiency. Details about the powertrain are currently few and far between, but we expect a range of around 150-200 miles. The electric Fiat 500 will face off against the Honda e and MINI Electric when it goes on sale later this year.
Honda Civic Type R
The Honda Civic Type R has been tweaked for 2020 and the facelifted car was due to take its place on the company’s stand in Geneva. Only ardent Honda enthusiasts will be able to spot the styling differences but the main changes are under the vented bonnet. It gets new dampers, reworked front suspension and new brake discs and pads.
The new Hyundai i20 has been revealed. The all-new model gets much bolder styling and a bigger body, which significantly improves practicality. Hyundai has also recently revealed the interior of the new car where it embraces refreshed tech, including ambient lighting, a horizontal blade design carried across the dashboard, a digital instrument cluster and a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, which should help move the i20 upmarket.
The facelifted version of the third-generation Hyundai i30 was meant to be shown in Geneva on 3 March. Hyundai has already revealed official pictures of the front of the car, where the i30 has gained a wider, more aggressive grille and a set of new LED headlights. The rear end will also get styling tweaks and the interior will get a technology upgrade. There’s been an engine range rejig, with the 1.4-litre petrol becoming a 1.5-litre. The more powerful unit will use mild-hybrid technology and it’s expected Hyundai will announce the addition of a plug-in hybrid model to the new i30 range. A new Hyundai i30 PHEV is likely to use the powertrain already in its sister cars from Kia, namely the XCeed and Ceed Sportwagon PHEVs.
The fourth-generation Kia Sorento has been revealed. It’s an all-new design that’s sharper and more angular, with a striking front grille and new front and rear LED lights. The interior has been given a makeover with a digital instrument cluster and new infotainment screen. Petrol and diesel engines are expected, with a plug-in hybrid model coming later to give buyers another, less expensive, alternative to plug-in hybrid SUVs like the Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine Hybrid and Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid.
The Mercedes E-Class range will all be facelifted for 2020. All versions of the car will get a sharp new nose design, with CLS-inspired grilles and lights, and Mercedes is piling on the technology to keep the E-Class fresh and modern. Many new driver aids will feature, alongside the latest version of Mercedes’ MBUX infotainment system. Mercedes expected that the E-Class range would be unveiled at Geneva, before going on sale in autumn.
The Mercedes A-Class hatchback has been on sale for over a year now, so it’s time for the SUV variant to arrive. Just like the last Mercedes GLA SUV, the new car looks like a bigger and bulkier A-Class, but now has a more SUV-like stance and increased space inside. A 302bhp GLA 35 AMG has already been confirmed and a 415bhp GLA 45 AMG model is on the way too, a car that will match the performance of the Porsche Macan Turbo.
Porsche 718 Cayman GTS and Porsche 718 Boxster GTS
Porsche recently revealed new GTS versions of the 718 Cayman and 718 Boxster, and we had expected these to make an appearance at the Geneva show. Both get a 394bhp 4.0-litre engine, which will please enthusiasts, and both slingshot from 0-62mph in just 4.5 seconds.
Porsche 911 Turbo
The range-topping Porsche 911 Turbo and Turbo S models were set to make their debuts at the same time. Using a brand-new 3.8-litre engine, the new 911s will produce over 600bhp and 650bhp respectively to rival Ferrari, Lamborghini and McLaren supercars.
We’ve already seen the first full images and details of the new SEAT Leon, but the car is yet to get its first public unveiling. It has much sharper styling with lights and a grille inspired by the SEAT Tarraco SUV, and a modern, hi-tech interior. A digital instrument cluster and a large 10.25-inch central touchscreen will feature, while plug-in hybrid and fast Cupra versions will be offered.
Skoda Kamiq Scoutline
Skoda’s small SUV is getting a new Scoutline trim, which brings rugged styling and extra equipment. The Scout trim level is available on four-wheel-drive Skoda models, but the ‘line’ suffix in the Scoutline name alludes to the fact that the Kamiq version will have the same range of engines as the rest of the range and front-wheel drive. It’ll go on sale in June, with a starting price of around £24,000.
Skoda Octavia vRS
The next Skoda Octavia vRS will have a plug-in hybrid powertrain, featuring a powerful petrol engine and an electric motor. It will be a little more upmarket than the current model, with design cues taken from the larger and costlier Skoda Superb. Once again, it’ll offer much more practicality than its main rivals, the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus, and will also benefit from the Golf’s tech upgrade.
The new Toyota Yaris hatchback looks to take on the Ford Fiesta and Renault Clio with sharp new styling and hybrid options. Featuring quicker steering, a lower driving position and a more rigid body, the 2020 Yaris promises to be better to drive than its predecessor. The hybrid is set to be both more efficient and more powerful. Sitting at the top of the range will be a flagship GR Yaris model, with four-wheel drive and rally pedigree.
Toyota has teased its new small SUV ahead of the car’s planned reveal at Geneva. The new car is underpinned by the same platform as the new Yaris hatchback and will feature a petrol/electric hybrid powertrain and all-wheel drive. A raised ride height will be complemented by rugged SUV styling with black plastic body cladding. The new model measures around four metres in length, placing it beneath the Toyota C-HR in the Japanese manufacturer’s current range.
Volkswagen Golf GTD Mk8
The latest iteration of Volkswagen’s fast diesel Golf, the GTD, would have made its public debut at this year’s show. It’ll be a rival to the fast diesel versions of the Ford Focus ST and BMW 1 Series and VW says it’s the most efficient and best-performing GTD to date. It gets more power than the old car, with its revised turbocharged 2.0-litre diesel engine producing 197bhp. Purists will mourn the loss of the manual GTD, as the new one is only available with a seven-speed DSG automatic gearbox. The new car will also be the most advanced model yet, with a 10.25-inch digital dial cluster and a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment screen, plus an advanced cruise control system that can assist the driver at speeds of up to 130mph.
Volkswagen Golf GTI
As one of a crop of new performance models produced by brands in the VW Group, the new Volkswagen Golf GTI is possibly the most eagerly anticipated. The eighth-generation car gets a considerable tech upgrade inside, with a high-tech cabin sporting twin digital screens and connected technology, but keeps the famous tartan upholstery and golf ball gear shifter. The outside bears all of the trademark GTI design touches, including red contrast detailing, sportier front and rear bumpers, plus there’s now the option of a full-width LED light bar located in the front radiator grille. Power comes from a 242bhp turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine that can be specced with a six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed DSG automatic.
Check out our latest reviews here.
Best new car deals 2021
Electric Citroen Ami to launch in the UK next year
Top 10 best small estates 2021