Top five concepts from the Frankfurt Motor Show
Another successful motor event has been and gone in a whirlwind of reveals, so it’s up to us to cast our ponderous gaze over the plethora of new cars the future will bring.
If the event proved anything it’s that there’s a bit of an arms race going on among manufacturers to not only build the definitive next-gen electric vehicle, but lead and dominate the market as well.
As every manufacturer seemed to claim to be spearheading the EV revolution with each successive reveal at Frankfurt Motor Show, we figured we’d try and decide on the five best concepts shown to see who could be the next king of the mountain.
Out of all the Mercedes models present at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the EQA concept is quite possibly the most significant. That’s because this car gives us further hints at what Mercedes’ all-electric sub-brand of the future will look like.
Taking the form of a compact three-door hatchback, the EQA is around the same size as the current A-Class and the 200kW electric drivetrain will offer a range of up to 400km (248 miles).
Performance-wise, it’s claimed to offer over 260bhp and 500Nm of torque, allowing for an impressive 0-62mph time around the five second mark.
Drivers will be able to choose between two driving modes – Sport and Sport Plus. With one electric motor at the front and one at the back, the driving characteristics will be altered by these two modes, varying the front-to-rear torque distribution.
Dr Zetsche, head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, said: "With the Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA, our electric initiative is gathering pace: by 2022 Mercedes-Benz Cars will have more than ten all-electric vehicles on the market."
Honda Urban EV
This certainly has a lot of people excitedly chattering, drawing comparisons to everything from the Volkswagen Golf MK I and Abarth A112 all the way to Honda’s own 1974 Civic.
The concept car is built on a completely new platform, and sets the direction for the technology and design that will appear on a future battery electric Honda production model.
“This is not some vision of the distant future; a production version of this car will be here in Europe in 2019,” stated Honda Motor Co. President and CEO, Takahiro Hachigo, during his press conference.
Its low and wide proportions give the car a planted, muscular stance that hints at sporty driving performance. Its compact proportions mean it has a total vehicle length 100mm shorter than the Jazz supermini.
The driver’s outward visibility from the Urban EV Concept is excellent thanks to slim A-pillars and a wide windscreen that appears to sweep around the entire front of the car.
BMW i Vision Dynamics
The BMW i Vision Dynamics – a four-door Gran Coupe with a range of 373 miles, a top speed of over 120 mph and acceleration of 0-62 in four seconds – promises to set a new pace of innovation.
The outline of the BMW i Vision Dynamics represents a further evolution of the classical BMW proportions; a long wheelbase, flowing roofline and short overhangs create a basic profile brimming with elegance and dynamism.
As a trailblazer for the BMW brand, it showcases very clearly the BMW Group’s future vision of emotionally engaging electrified mobility. Indeed, BMW will continue to focus its attentions on sporty and elegant vehicles in the years ahead.
“At the BMW Group, the future of electric mobility has already arrived,” says Harald Krüger, chairman of the board of management at BMW AG.
Volkswagen I.D. Crozz
— Volkswagen UK (@UKVolkswagen) September 12, 2017
A crossover of an SUV and a four-door coupe, the I.D. Crozz is a sporty, zero-emission all-round vehicle whose electric 4MOTION all-wheel drive system is expected to be as impressive on unpaved trails as it is in adverse weather conditions.
The driving range of the SUEV that outputs 225 kW (system power) and boasts a top speed of 111mph is up to 300 miles (NEDC) on one battery charge. The high-performance battery can be charged to 80% of its energy capacity in 30 minutes using a fast-charging system.
The interior has been developed to act as an open space, with a superior amount of space and highly versatile seating concept. B-pillars were omitted in the I.D. Crozz so that the large swinging and sliding doors can be opened wide, and it is even possible to transport a crossbike without any trouble.
Dr Herbert Diess, chairman of the Volkswagen brand board of management, had this to say: "The Volkswagen Brand will be investing 6 billion euros in electric mobility over the next five years. Our task is to make modern technology available to many people. This is especially important in times of technological transformation.”
Audi has gone a step further than other cars on this list to not only show their vision of low emission driving, but also their vision of a fully autonomous future.
The four-door 2+2 Audi Aicon study is the brand’s interpretation of the possible exterior and interior design of the coming decades.
With no steering wheel, no pedals, a range of 434 miles thanks to four electric motors, and a wheel base longer than the new Audi A8, is it too bonkers to exist?
The Audi Aicon is an all-arounder well prepared for its primary task: to offer a maximum of comfort, communications technology and freedom for its occupants during a long journey. It combines the scopes for autonomous driving in an urban environment and on the highway with an unprecedented range for an electric drive.
Which of the five do you think is going to reinvent the car? Let us know…