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2013 Geneva Motor Show: Green Car Preview

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The Geneva Motor Show is almost upon us.

Physically small in size next to many international shows, there's nevertheless plenty to look at, particularly if you're interested in green transport and concept vehicles.

This year should be another spectacular one for green vehicles, with a few high-profile launches like the Volkswagen XL1 and McLaren P1. Click on any of the model names to be taken to that car's page, with more details and images.

 

Electric cars

Chevrolet Spark EV

We've known details of the Chevy Spark EV for quite some time now, but the small electric car makes its European debut in Geneva and there's bound to be a fanfare. Chevy has invested real time and effort in making the Spark a usable electric car, and its European introduction confirms that it's not the "compliance car" we once thought it might be.

Hiriko

It might look more like a concept vehicle, but the Hiriko folding electric car is real, and soon to be found in cities around the world. It's tiny (even shorter when parked) and only does 31 mph, but that's enough for the tight city centers in which you'll find them. Range is 75 miles and a charge can take as little as 15 minutes.

Volkswagen e-Golf

After years of Golf electric prototypes, the e-Golf is thought to be the real deal - a rival for Nissan's Leaf and Ford's Focus Electric. Recently revealed in leaked images, the car's range will be similar to that of the Nissan Leaf, as will its performance. Will that be enough? It's hard to say, but the VW badge on the front has to count for something...

 

Plug-in hybrids

Audi A3 e-tron

The last Audi A3 e-tron was an all-electric car, but the variant due to debut at Geneva adds a dose of production reality and a plug-in hybrid drivetrain. It uses a 1.4-liter TSI gasoline engine and a 75-kilowatt electric motor. With 204 horsepower, performance will be strong. It hasn't been confirmed, but the e-tron looks suspiciously production-ready, too...

Volkswagen XL1

If there's one car here you'd expect to be a concept vehicle, it's the XL1. Latest in a line of ultra-efficient streamlined Volkswagen studies, the XL1 is actually going into production. A 0.8-liter, twin-cylinder turbodiesel engine and electric motor provide the power, and economy is an incredible 261 mpg.

 

Hybrids

McLaren P1

A hypercar with hundreds of horsepower isn't typical GreenCarReports material, but many of the next-generation of supercars is turning to hybrid power, both to boost performance and deliver surprisingly low emissions. One of these is the McLaren P1, with 903 horsepower and a top speed far on the other side of 200 mph. Conversely, it also offers 12 miles of electric range--enough, McLaren says, to enter zero-emission city centers, have dinner, and return home.


Qoros hybrid

The first Chinese maker to make a full, serious assault on Europe, Qoros is launching a range of smartly-styled vehicles with high levels of quality and safety at Geneva. While its production sedan will be the main focus, the brand is also debuting a hybrid model. The brand has the determination, but can it beat the established best?


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