New sport-utility vehicles, supercars and other four-wheeled concepts are grabbing the spotlight at this year’s Geneva International Motor Show, reflecting the industry’s improved mood against a backdrop of global economic uncertainty.
The emphasis on high-riding SUVs, audaciously sporty cars and new technologies reflects automakers’ strategies for boosting sales in Europe and other regions outside of North America, where cheap fuel contributed to a record number of vehicles sold last year.
Europeans have begun welcoming the SUV, helped by low oil prices, but sales in Europe still lag below previous highs amid worries that low oil prices could weaken the global economy. Italian luxury carmaker Maserati, for example, introduced a new luxury SUV to compete with the likes of the Jaguar F-Pace and Porsche Cayenne.
Supercars from Aston Martin, Bugatti, Ferrari and Lamborghini have turned heads. New concept cars also are drawing attention, as automakers vie to entice consumers who reflect a wide variety of tastes and purchasing power – and who are increasingly concerned with the quality of their audio, entertainment, and navigation and communication systems.
(Picture editor: Christoph Balsiger, swissinfo.ch, Text: John Heilprin, swissinfo.ch)