Volvo's Concept Estate completes the trio of concepts created under senior vice president design Thomas Ingenlath following the Coupe and the XC Coupe and channels the classic P1800 ES.
It's essentially a shooting brake derivative of the Concept Coupe we saw in Frankfurt last year, with an alternative grille insert the only obvious lower body changes. Its tail follows the treatment of the XC Coupe from Detroit with its floating panel between its distinctive lamp graphics. All this is finished in a particularly fetching shade of metallic brown.
"The 1800-models are iconic Volvos, renowned for their beautiful forms and detailing," says Ingenlath. "However, using elements from their exterior and interior has nothing to do with being retro. We are using these subtle links to a glorious past to create a future in which sheer beauty becomes a recognized part of Volvo's identity."
Its interior is also closely related to its siblings but here serves to show the functionality behind the new range of vertical touchscreen-driven HMI that is destined for production later this year.
Orange seat belts and woven wool carpets from the Swedish designer Kasthall also feature, along with a crystal gear lever – that has an orange glow – from Orrefors/Kosta Boda. There's also chequered black and white wool textile on the front seats' headliner and rear sides.
Handcrafted details, such as the saddle leather-covered IP, waxed wood inlays and machined copper are designed to emphasize the Concept Estate's Scandinavian background. A specially designed game set of Swedish ‘kubb' is found under the load floor, while the rules are printed on the transparent floor. Stutterheim raincoats are also included in the back.
The Citroën C1 and Peugeot 108 twins (along with their unidentical Toyota Aygo sibling) will make their second-generation debuts at next week's Geneva motor show.
Like the old C1 and 107 the pair share a bodyshell but this time there's a greater level of differentiation. The Peugeot is the more restrained of the two, with an iteration of the brand's latest face, with a horizontal chrome grille and headlamps that feature a step in their lower surface. Meanwhile the Citroën is the more extrovert, with an unusual, rather surprised expression thanks to its large, circular 'eyes' and raised 'eyebrows'.
This is a little confusion however, as the Citroën's grille graphic, vertical DRLs, black A-pillars that cut down to meet the windowline and contrast roof all say 'DS' rather than C-line Citroën. The establishment of the new Citroën C-line design language, introduced by the C4 Cactus, may well take some time to filter through the range.
The 108 is also available a two-tone colorway, its livery split around its beltline and marked by a broad, pattered stripe, apparently inspired by the fashion industry. Its A-pillar treatment is in body color, while its DLO pushes forwards into the front fender in a similar way to the rear of the 208's windowline.
This pair's bodysides are shared and available with either 3 or 5 doors, while they are also offered with full-length fabric sunroofs.
Their rears are also largely shared, with deep, glazed tailgates. Only lamp inserts and bumper finishers are different.
We're yet to see their interiors but they promise to be rather more upmarket than the cars they replace. We're rather sad to say the days of the honest, utilitarian A-segment car appear to be numbered.
Hyundai's new Intrado concept, which will debut at next week's Geneva motor show, is the first Hyundai designed under the direction of Peter Schreyer and is the first concept to utilize the brand's Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language first seen on the 2015 Genesis.
The fuel cell-powered crossover concept has been developed by Hyundai's design studio in Germany and was inspired by the aviation industry.
It features a more three-dimensional hexagonal grille flanked by slender LED headlights and horizontal daytime running lights. The glasshouse and heavily raked windscreen sit on powerful wheelarches, while grey plastic cladding also features.
The chassis is constructed using a patent-pending, flexible, soft woven carbon fiber tubing system that can be bent into more flexible shapes than conventional materials. It can then be made hard and rigid, removing the need for B-pillars. It also saves weight and cost.
Inside, the orange and black-themed cabin features a flat-bottom steering wheel, a small, dashboard-mounted screen and a center console with the gear selector, parking brake and climate controls. A digital instrument cluster also features a compass and a 4×4-style inclinometer.
It's that time of year again as Swiss design company Rinspeed announces its annual Geneva concept car. This year's XchangE deals with the issues and opportunities presented by autonomous driving, which is rather more pertinent than some of its forebears – remember the pickup/hovercraft hybrid?!
The all-electric sedan is effectively a Tesla Model S with few external changes, however the project is focussed on how drivers and passengers can make the most of their time once autonomous technology becomes available, so the focus is on its all-new interior.
The seating was developed by a company that usually designs prosthetic limbs, offering an unprecedented level of adjustment. Occupants can recline or turn around to enjoy the on-board entertainment system. The intention is to create an ambience somewhere between a business jet and a yacht. This move away from traditional vehicle architecture is helped by the by-wire steering that allows the wheel to shift to the center of the car when not in use. Car-to-Car and Car-to-X communication is one of the keys to its autonomy.
The cabin features shades of blue and gray, while the materials were selected on the basis of their tactility – there's even a foot-warming 'pocket' for the passenger. Its roof features ‘Radiant' surface coating, which allows it to change colors thanks to 358 individually controlled LEDs.
And because this is a Rinspeed there are some truly outlandish elements – how about the world's most expensive watch winder fitted to the steering column inside a transparent globe and wound by the electric motor?
The third-generation Renault Twingo will make its official debut at the Geneva motor show next month, where it will be looking to recapture the hearts of those disillusioned by its predecessor.
For the first time, Renault's smallest model has five doors, yet more significantly its engine is now mounted at the rear, its platform shared with the next-generation Smart. As a result its nose is extremely short by modern standards (although it features a very definite transition from hood to windscreen unlike the monovolume original), while what appears to be an extremely generous amount of overall length has been given to the cabin – note how the front door shut pushes forward over the wheel. Its compact rear overhang adds to this sense.
If its proportions aren't so extrovertly rear-engined, the visual weight of the rear wheel arch – accentuated by the optional graphics packs – certainly hints at the power source.
The rear accentuates this with its lamps that push out into the arch flares and act as a cross-section to the body like the rear-engined R5 Turbo rally car's admittedly more overt box arches.
Its face is clearly firmly in-line with the brand's current strategy, with the large diamond feeding into a chrome (or colored) moustache, while the circular lamp inserts and auxiliary DRLs nod to the outgoing car.
No dimensions or interior details have yet been released.
Chevrolet's new Adra concept is the first car to be designed by General Motors Technical Centre India (GMTC-I) in Bangalore exclusively for the emerging Indian market.
The compact SUV concept uses the usual Chevrolet global design language while taking into account the needs of younger Indian buyers, and will compete in the market with the Ford EcoSport and Renault Duster.
Featuring a large grille and headlamps extending over the fenders, it has all the attributes of a traditional SUV – such as high ground clearance and a high seating stance. Inside, a flat-bottomed steering wheel and a central infotainment screen help create a modern aesthetic.
Holden's Global Design Center in Melbourne, Australia, helped develop the Adra, as well as constructing and fabricating it.
Michael Simcoe, executive director GMIO design, said, "The concept clearly showcases GM India's impressive creative design talent and strong understanding of this emerging market."
"The end result is a show car that is sure to impress the Indian public and one that GM India should be incredibly proud of."